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To summarize published literature on the incidence of adverse drug effects (ADEs) associated with guideline-directed medical therapy (GDMT) for patients with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF). Systematic literature review. A systematic literature review was conducted in PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, and Clinical Key covering January 1990 to December 2018. Key search terms were ADEs for β-blockers (BBs), ACE inhibitors (ACEis), angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists (MRAs), and/or angiotensin receptor-neprilysin inhibitors (ARNis) in adult patients (≥ 18 years) with HFrEF. A total of 279 eligible articles were identified, of which 29 reported drug-related adverse effects and were included in this review. Of the 29 studies, 11 examined BBs; 9, MRAs; 6, ARNis; 2, ACEis; and 1, ARBs. The most common reported ADEs across these therapeutic classes included bradycardia, dizziness, hypotension, hyperkalemia, cough, and renal impairment. The incidence of BB-induced bradycardia was 1% to 52% based on 9 studies, and 6 studies described dizziness as a result of BBs and ARNis (15%-43%). Fourteen studies reported induced hypotension (1.4%-63%); 13 studies, hyperkalemia (0.6%-30.2%); 3 studies, cough (37%-50%); and 4 studies, renal impairment (0.6%-7.6%). Findings show that drug-related adverse effects are commonly reported in clinical trials and highlight the sizable burden of ADEs with medical therapy across patients with HFrEF. Additional real-world evidence and studies aiming to improve the tolerability of GDMT for patients with HFrEF are warranted.


Michael Butzner, Ralph J Riello, Phil Sarocco, Nihar Desai. Adverse drug effects across patients with heart failure: a systematic review. The American journal of managed care. 2022 Mar 01;28(3):e113-e120

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PMID: 35404555

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