Publications by authors named "Gilles Dagenais"

139 Publications

Total cardiovascular or fatal events in people with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular risk factors treated with dulaglutide in the REWIND trail: a post hoc analysis.

Cardiovasc Diabetol 2020 11 25;19(1):199. Epub 2020 Nov 25.

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Science, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Background: The Researching cardiovascular Events with a Weekly INcretin in Diabetes (REWIND) double blind randomized trial demonstrated that weekly subcutaneous dulaglutide 1.5 mg, a glucagon like peptide-1 receptor agonist, versus matched placebo reduced the first outcome of major adverse cardiovascular event (MACE), cardiovascular death, nonfatal myocardial infarction or nonfatal stroke (594 versus 663 events) in 9901 persons with type 2 diabetes and either chronic cardiovascular disease or risk factors, and followed during 5.4 years. These findings were based on a time-to-first-event analysis and preclude relevant information on the burden of total major events occurring during the trial. This analysis reports on the total cardiovascular or fatal events in the REWIND participants METHODS: We compared the total incidence of MACE or non-cardiovascular deaths, and the total incidence of expanded MACE (MACE, unstable angina, heart failure or revascularization) or non-cardiovascular deaths between participants randomized to dulaglutide and those randomized to placebo. Incidences were expressed as number per 1000 person-years. Hazard ratios (HR) were calculated using the conditional time gap and proportional means models.

Results: Participants had a mean age of 66.2 years, 46.3% were women and 31% had previous cardiovascular disease. During the trial there were 1972 MACE or non-cardiovascular deaths and 3673 expanded MACE or non-cardiovascular deaths. The incidence of total MACE or non-cardiovascular deaths in the dulaglutide and placebo groups was 35.8 and 40.3 per 1000 person-years, respectively [absolute reduction = 4.5 per 1000 person-years; conditional time gap HR 0.90 (95% CI, 0.82-0.98) p = 0.020, and proportional means HR 0.89 (95% CI, 0.80-0.98) p = 0.022]. The incidence of total expanded MACE or non-cardiovascular deaths in the dulaglutide and placebo groups was 67.1 and 74.7 per 1000 person-years, respectively [absolute reduction = 7.6 per 1000 person-years; conditional time gap HR 0.93 (95% CI, 0.87-0.99) p = 0.023, and proportional means HR 0.90 (95% CI, 0.82-0.99) p = 0.028].

Conclusions: These findings suggest that weekly subcutaneous dulaglutide reduced total cardiovascular or fatal event burden in people with type 2 diabetes at moderate cardiovascular risk.

Clinical Trial Registration: https://www.clinicaltrials.gouv . Unique Identifier NCT01394952).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12933-020-01179-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7690176PMC
November 2020

Similar cardiovascular outcomes in patients with diabetes and established or high risk for coronary vascular disease treated with dulaglutide with and without baseline metformin.

Eur Heart J 2020 Nov 16. Epub 2020 Nov 16.

Department of Medicine K2, Karolinska Institutet, Solnavägen 1, Stockholm SE171 77, Sweden.

Objective : Recent European Guidelines for Diabetes, Prediabetes and Cardiovascular Diseases introduced a shift in managing patients with type 2 diabetes at high risk for or established cardiovascular (CV) disease by recommending GLP-1 receptor agonists and SGLT-2 inhibitors as initial glucose-lowering therapy. This is questioned since outcome trials of these drug classes had metformin as background therapy. In this post hoc analysis, the effect of dulaglutide on CV events was investigated according to the baseline metformin therapy by means of a subgroup analysis of the Researching Cardiovascular Events with a Weekly Incretin in Diabetes (REWIND) trial.

Research Design And Methods : Patients in REWIND (n = 9901; women: 46.3%; mean age: 66.2 years) had type 2 diabetes and either a previous CV event (31%) or high CV risk (69%). They were randomized (1:1) to sc. dulaglutide (1.5 mg/weekly) or placebo in addition to standard of care. The primary outcome was the first of a composite of nonfatal myocardial infarction, nonfatal stroke, and death from cardiovascular or unknown causes. Key secondary outcomes included a microvascular composite endpoint, all-cause death, and heart failure. The effect of dulaglutide in patients with and without baseline metformin was evaluated by a Cox regression hazard model with baseline metformin, dulaglutide assignment, and their interaction as independent variables. Adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated by a Cox regression model with adjustments for factors differing at baseline between people with vs. without metformin, identified using the backward selection.

Results : Compared to patients with metformin at baseline (n = 8037; 81%), those without metformin (n = 1864; 19%) were older and slightly less obese and had higher proportions of women, prior CV events, heart failure, and renal disease. The primary outcome occurred in 976 (12%) participants with baseline metformin and in 281 (15%) without. There was no significant difference in the effect of dulaglutide on the primary outcome in patients with vs. without metformin at baseline [HR 0.92 (CI 0.81-1.05) vs. 0.78 (CI 0.61-0.99); interaction P = 0.18]. Findings for key secondary outcomes were similar in patients with and without baseline metformin.

Conclusion : This analysis suggests that the cardioprotective effect of dulaglutide is unaffected by the baseline use of metformin therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa777DOI Listing
November 2020

Polypill with or without Aspirin in Persons without Cardiovascular Disease.

N Engl J Med 2021 01 13;384(3):216-228. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

From the Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON (S.Y., P.J., P. Gao, K.T., C.C., T.M., J.T., J.B.), Queen's University, Kingston, ON (K. Yeates), and Université Laval Institut Universitaire de Cardiologie et de Pneumologie de Québec, Quebec, QC (G.D.) - all in Canada; the University of the Philippines, Manila (A.D.); St. John's Medical College, Bangalore, India (D.X., P. Girish, F.X., P.P.); Fundación Oftalmológica de Santander, Universidad de Santander, Bucaramanga, Colombia (P.L.-J., C.R.); Universiti Teknologi MARA Selayang, Selangor, and UCSI University, Cheras, Kuala Lumpur - both in Malaysia (K. Yusoff); Universitas Indonesia, National Cardiovascular Center, Jakarta (A.S.); Fattouma Bourguiba Hospital and University of Monastir, Monastir, Tunisia (H.G.); and Eminence, Dhaka, Bangladesh (S.T.).

Background: A polypill comprising statins, multiple blood-pressure-lowering drugs, and aspirin has been proposed to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Methods: Using a 2-by-2-by-2 factorial design, we randomly assigned participants without cardiovascular disease who had an elevated INTERHEART Risk Score to receive a polypill (containing 40 mg of simvastatin, 100 mg of atenolol, 25 mg of hydrochlorothiazide, and 10 mg of ramipril) or placebo daily, aspirin (75 mg) or placebo daily, and vitamin D or placebo monthly. We report here the outcomes for the polypill alone as compared with matching placebo, for aspirin alone as compared with matching placebo, and for the polypill plus aspirin as compared with double placebo. For the polypill-alone and polypill-plus-aspirin comparisons, the primary outcome was death from cardiovascular causes, myocardial infarction, stroke, resuscitated cardiac arrest, heart failure, or revascularization. For the aspirin comparison, the primary outcome was death from cardiovascular causes, myocardial infarction, or stroke. Safety was also assessed.

Results: A total of 5713 participants underwent randomization, and the mean follow-up was 4.6 years. The low-density lipoprotein cholesterol level was lower by approximately 19 mg per deciliter and systolic blood pressure was lower by approximately 5.8 mm Hg with the polypill and with combination therapy than with placebo. The primary outcome for the polypill comparison occurred in 126 participants (4.4%) in the polypill group and in 157 (5.5%) in the placebo group (hazard ratio, 0.79; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.63 to 1.00). The primary outcome for the aspirin comparison occurred in 116 participants (4.1%) in the aspirin group and in 134 (4.7%) in the placebo group (hazard ratio, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.67 to 1.10). The primary outcome for the polypill-plus-aspirin comparison occurred in 59 participants (4.1%) in the combined-treatment group and in 83 (5.8%) in the double-placebo group (hazard ratio, 0.69; 95% CI, 0.50 to 0.97). The incidence of hypotension or dizziness was higher in groups that received the polypill than in their respective placebo groups.

Conclusions: Combined treatment with a polypill plus aspirin led to a lower incidence of cardiovascular events than did placebo among participants without cardiovascular disease who were at intermediate cardiovascular risk. (Funded by the Wellcome Trust and others; TIPS-3 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01646437.).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1056/NEJMoa2028220DOI Listing
January 2021

Contrasting Associations Between Diabetes and Cardiovascular Mortality Rates in Low-, Middle-, and High-Income Countries: Cohort Study Data From 143,567 Individuals in 21 Countries in the PURE Study.

Diabetes Care 2020 Dec 15;43(12):3094-3101. Epub 2020 Oct 15.

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Objective: We aimed to compare cardiovascular (CV) events, all-cause mortality, and CV mortality rates among adults with and without diabetes in countries with differing levels of income.

Research Design And Methods: The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study enrolled 143,567 adults aged 35-70 years from 4 high-income countries (HIC), 12 middle-income countries (MIC), and 5 low-income countries (LIC). The mean follow-up was 9.0 ± 3.0 years.

Results: Among those with diabetes, CVD rates (LIC 10.3, MIC 9.2, HIC 8.3 per 1,000 person-years, < 0.001), all-cause mortality (LIC 13.8, MIC 7.2, HIC 4.2 per 1,000 person-years, < 0.001), and CV mortality (LIC 5.7, MIC 2.2, HIC 1.0 per 1,000 person-years, < 0.001) were considerably higher in LIC compared with MIC and HIC. Within LIC, mortality was higher in those in the lowest tertile of wealth index (low 14.7%, middle 10.8%, and high 6.5%). In contrast to HIC and MIC, the increased CV mortality in those with diabetes in LIC remained unchanged even after adjustment for behavioral risk factors and treatments (hazard ratio [95% CI] 1.89 [1.58-2.27] to 1.78 [1.36-2.34]).

Conclusions: CVD rates, all-cause mortality, and CV mortality were markedly higher among those with diabetes in LIC compared with MIC and HIC with mortality risk remaining unchanged even after adjustment for risk factors and treatments. There is an urgent need to improve access to care to those with diabetes in LIC to reduce the excess mortality rates, particularly among those in the poorer strata of society.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2337/dc20-0886DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7770267PMC
December 2020

Rivaroxaban for Prevention of Covert Brain Infarcts and Cognitive Decline: The COMPASS MRI Substudy.

Stroke 2020 10 21;51(10):2901-2909. Epub 2020 Sep 21.

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON, Canada (M.S., R.G.H., J.B., J.W.E., S.J.C., L.D., K.W.R., A.C., E.M.L., S.Y.).

Background And Purpose: Covert brain infarcts are associated with cognitive decline. It is not known whether therapies that prevent symptomatic stroke prevent covert infarcts. COMPASS compared rivaroxaban with and without aspirin with aspirin for the prevention of stroke, myocardial infarction, and vascular death in participants with stable vascular disease and was terminated early because of benefits of rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily plus aspirin over aspirin. We obtained serial magnetic resonance imagings and cognitive tests in a consenting subgroup of COMPASS patients to examine treatment effects on infarcts, cerebral microbleeds, and white matter hyperintensities.

Methods: Baseline and follow-up magnetic resonance imagings were completed in 1445 participants with a mean (SD) interval of 2.0 (0.7) years. Whole-brain T1, T2 fluid-attenuated inversion recovery, T2* sequences were centrally interpreted by blinded, trained readers. Participants had serial measurements of cognition and function. The primary end point was the proportion of participants with incident covert infarcts. Secondary end points were the composite of clinical stroke and covert brain infarcts, cerebral microbleeds, and white matter hyperintensities.

Results: At baseline, 493 (34.1%) participants had infarcts. Incident covert infarcts occurred in 55 (3.8%) participants. In the overall trial rivaroxaban plus aspirin reduced ischemic stroke by 49% (0.7% versus 1.4%; hazard ratio [95% CI], 0.51 [0.38-0.68]). In the magnetic resonance imaging substudy the effects of rivaroxaban+aspirin versus aspirin were: covert infarcts: 2.7% versus 3.5% (odds ratio [95% CI], 0.77 [0.37-1.60]); Covert infarcts or ischemic stroke: 2.9% versus 5.3% (odds ratio [95% CI], 0.53 [0.27-1.03]). Incident microbleeds occurred in 6.6% of participants and 65.7% of participants had an increase in white matter hyperintensities volume with no effect of treatment for either end point. There was no effect on cognitive tests.

Conclusions: Covert infarcts were not significantly reduced by treatment with rivaroxaban and aspirin but estimates for the combination of ischemic stroke and covert infarcts were consistent with the effect on ischemic stroke in the overall trial. Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01776424.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.120.029762DOI Listing
October 2020

Global variations in the prevalence, treatment, and impact of atrial fibrillation in a multi-national cohort of 153,152 middle-aged individuals.

Cardiovasc Res 2020 Aug 10. Epub 2020 Aug 10.

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Canada.

Aims: To compare the prevalence of electrocardiogram (ECG)-documented atrial fibrillation (or flutter) (AF) across eight regions of the world, and to examine anti-thrombotic use and clinical outcomes.

Methods And Results: Baseline ECGs were collected in 153,152 middle-aged participants (ages 35 to 70 years) to document AF in two community-based studies, spanning 20 countries. Medication use and clinical outcome data (mean follow up of 7.4 years) were available in one cohort. Cross sectional analyses were performed to document the prevalence of AF and medication use, and associations between AF and clinical events were examined prospectively. Mean age of participants was 52.1 years, and 57.7% were female. Age and sex-standardized prevalence of AF varied 12-fold between regions; with the highest in North America, Europe, China and Southeast Asia (270-360 cases per 100,000 persons); and lowest in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia (30-60 cases per 100,000 persons)(p < 0.001). Compared with low-income countries (LICs), AF prevalence was 7-fold higher in middle-income countries (MICs) and 11-fold higher in high-income countries (HICs)(p < 0.001). Differences in AF prevalence remained significant after adjusting for traditional AF risk factors. In LICs/MICs, 24% of participants with AF and a CHADS2 score ≥1 received anti-thrombotic therapy, compared with 85% in HICs. AF was associated with an increased risk of stroke (hazard ratio [HR: 2.29; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.49-3.52) and death (HR: 2.97; 95% CI 2.25-3.93); with similar rates in different country income levels.

Conclusions: Large variations in AF prevalence occur in different regions and country income settings, but this is only partially explained by traditional AF risk factors. Anti-thrombotic therapy is infrequently used in poorer countries despite the high risk of stroke associated with AF.

Translational Perspective: We examined atrial fibrillation (AF) prevalence in 153,152 middle-aged participants spanning 20 countries. Age and sex-standardized prevalence of AF varied by as much as 12-fold between regions; highest in North America, Europe, China and Southeast Asia (270-360 cases per 100,000 persons); and lowest in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia (30-60 cases per 100,000 persons)(p < 0.001); and by as much as 11-fold between groups of countries at different income levels (p < 0.001). Global variations were poorly explained by traditional AF risk factors. Future studies are needed to understand the predominant determinants driving the variation in AF burden across different regions of the world.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cvr/cvaa241DOI Listing
August 2020

Efficacy and safety of rivaroxaban plus aspirin in women and men with chronic coronary or peripheral artery disease.

Cardiovasc Res 2021 Feb;117(3):942-949

Department of Medicine, Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Aims: The COMPASS trial demonstrated that the combination of rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily and aspirin 100 mg once daily compared with aspirin 100 mg once daily reduced major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) in patients with chronic coronary artery disease or peripheral artery disease by 24% during a mean follow-up of 23 months. We explored whether this effect varies by sex.

Methods And Results: The effects were examined in women and men using log-rank tests and Kaplan-Meier curve. Hazard ratios (HRs) and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were obtained from stratified Cox proportional hazards models to explore subgroup effects including subgroup of women and men according to baseline modified REACH risk score. Of 27 395 patients randomized, 18 278 were allocated to receive rivaroxaban plus aspirin (n = 9152) or aspirin alone (n = 9126), and of these, 22.1% were women. Women compared with men had similar incidence rates for MACE and major bleeding but borderline lower rates for myocardial infarction (1.7% vs. 2.2%, P = 0.05). The effect of combination therapy compared with aspirin in women and men was consistent for MACE (women: 3.8% vs. 5.2%, HR 0.72, 95% CI 0.54-0.97; men: 4.2% vs. 5.5%, HR 0.76, 95% CI 0.66-0.89; P interaction 0.75) and major bleeding (women: 3.1% vs. 1.4%, HR 2.22, 95% CI 1.42-3.46; men: 3.2% vs. 2.0%, HR 1.60, 95% CI 1.29-1.97; P interaction 0.19). There was no significant interaction between randomized treatment and baseline modified REACH score above or below the median for MACE or major bleeding.

Conclusion: In patients with stable coronary artery disease or peripheral artery disease, the combination of rivaroxaban (2.5 mg twice daily) and aspirin compared with aspirin alone appears to produce consistent benefits in women and men, independent of baseline cardiovascular risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cvr/cvaa100DOI Listing
February 2021

The household economic burden of non-communicable diseases in 18 countries.

BMJ Glob Health 2020 11;5(2):e002040. Epub 2020 Feb 11.

London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Faculty of Public Health and Policy, London, UK.

Background: Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading cause of death globally. In 2014, the United Nations committed to reducing premature mortality from NCDs, including by reducing the burden of healthcare costs. Since 2014, the Prospective Urban and Rural Epidemiology (PURE) Study has been collecting health expenditure data from households with NCDs in 18 countries.

Methods: Using data from the PURE Study, we estimated risk of catastrophic health spending and impoverishment among households with at least one person with NCDs (cardiovascular disease, diabetes, kidney disease, cancer and respiratory diseases; n=17 435), with hypertension only (a leading risk factor for NCDs; n=11 831) or with neither (n=22 654) by country income group: high-income countries (Canada and Sweden), upper middle income countries (UMICs: Brazil, Chile, Malaysia, Poland, South Africa and Turkey), lower middle income countries (LMICs: the Philippines, Colombia, India, Iran and the Occupied Palestinian Territory) and low-income countries (LICs: Bangladesh, Pakistan, Zimbabwe and Tanzania) and China.

Results: The prevalence of catastrophic spending and impoverishment is highest among households with NCDs in LMICs and China. After adjusting for covariates that might drive health expenditure, the absolute risk of catastrophic spending is higher in households with NCDs compared with no NCDs in LMICs (risk difference=1.71%; 95% CI 0.75 to 2.67), UMICs (0.82%; 95% CI 0.37 to 1.27) and China (7.52%; 95% CI 5.88 to 9.16). A similar pattern is observed in UMICs and China for impoverishment. A high proportion of those with NCDs in LICs, especially women (38.7% compared with 12.6% in men), reported not taking medication due to costs.

Conclusions: Our findings show that financial protection from healthcare costs for people with NCDs is inadequate, particularly in LMICs and China. While the burden of NCD care may appear greatest in LMICs and China, the burden in LICs may be masked by care foregone due to costs. The high proportion of women reporting foregone care due to cost may in part explain gender inequality in treatment of NCDs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjgh-2019-002040DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7042605PMC
February 2020

Variability in High-Sensitivity Cardiac Troponin T Testing in Stable Patients With and Without Coronary Artery Disease.

Can J Cardiol 2019 11 22;35(11):1505-1512. Epub 2019 Aug 22.

Québec Heart and Lung Institute, Laval University, Québec City, Québec, Canada.

Background: High-sensitivity cardiac troponin T (hs-cTnT) is used to diagnosis acute myocardial infarction, often based on values exceeding the 99th percentile threshold (14 ng/L) of normal populations. The short- and long-term variability of hs-cTnT in stable patients with or without coronary artery disease (CAD) is unknown.

Methods: Prospective cohort study of 75 stable patients with CAD and 3 differing clinical profiles (stable angina [SA]; remote myocardial infarction [MI]; repetitive acute coronary syndrome [ACS]) and 25 controls without angiographic CAD, each with 15 hs-cTnT measurements over 1 year.

Results: Individual results (1491 measurements) did not vary over within-day, daily, weekly, monthly, seasonal, or yearly time windows. The overall median was 2.8 ng/L (interquartile range [IQR] 5.2 ng/L) with the highest median (6.3 ng/L) and variability (IQR 6. 9 ng/L) in the repetitive ACS group. Diabetes, impaired renal function, and raised C-reactive protein were independent predictors of higher hs-cTnT values (average increase by 8.5 ng/L [95% CI, 5.0-11.9], 5.0 ng/L [95% CI, 2.0-8.1] and 4.0 ng/L (95% CI, 1.0-7.0), respectively). The 99th percentile value of all hs-cTnT measurements in the combined stable patients with CAD was 39 ng/L compared with 14 ng/L in the non-CAD patients.

Conclusions: Individual hs-cTnT readings in both patients with and without CAD were stable over hours, days, weeks, and months. Diabetes, poor renal function, and elevated C-reactive protein were independent predictors of higher median and IQR hs-cTnT values, often exceeding conventional thresholds. These findings highlight the need for caution and clinical contextualization in the interpretation of hs-cTnT results.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cjca.2019.08.022DOI Listing
November 2019

Major Bleeding in Patients With Coronary or Peripheral Artery Disease Treated With Rivaroxaban Plus Aspirin.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2019 09;74(12):1519-1528

Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background: In patients with coronary or peripheral artery disease, the combination of rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily and aspirin 100 mg once daily compared with aspirin 100 mg once daily reduced major adverse cardiovascular events and mortality and increased bleeding.

Objectives: This study sought to explore the effects of the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin compared with aspirin on sites, timing, severity, and management of bleeding in the COMPASS (Cardiovascular Outcomes for People Using Anticoagulation Strategies) study.

Methods: This study reports, by treatment group, the number and proportion of patients; hazard rate ratios for bleeding according to site and severity; the timing of bleeding using landmark analyses; and the number and proportion of patients who received blood products and other hemostatic treatments.

Results: Of 27,395 patients enrolled (mean age 68 years, 22% women), 18,278 were randomized to the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin or to aspirin alone and followed for a mean of 23 months. Compared with aspirin alone, the combination increased modified International Society on Thrombosis and Hemostasis major bleeding (288 of 9,152 [3.1%] vs. 170 of 9,126 [1.9%]), (HR: 1.70; 95% CI: 1.40 to 2.05; p < 0.001), International Society on Thrombosis and Hemostasis major bleeding (206 of 9,152 [2.3%] vs. 116 of 9,126 [1.3%]), (HR: 1.78; 95% CI: 1.41 to 2.23; p < 0.0001), and minor bleeding (838 of 9,152 [9.2%] vs. 503 of 9,126 [5.5%]), (HR: 1.70; 95% CI 1.52 to 1.90; p < 0.0001); the combination also increased the need for any red cell transfusion (87 of 9,152 [1.0%] vs. 44 of 9,126 [0.5%]), (HR: 1.97; 95% CI 1.37 to 2.83, p = 0.0002). The gastrointestinal (GI) tract was the most common site of increased major bleeding (140 of 9,152 [1.5%] vs. 65 of 9,126 [0.7%]), (HR: 2.15; 95% CI: 1.60 to 2.89; p < 0.001), and the increase in bleeding was predominantly in the first year after randomization. Approximately one-third of major GI bleeding was gastric or duodenal, one-third was colonic or rectal, and one-third was from an unknown GI site. The study investigators reported that approximately three-quarters of major bleeding episodes were of mild or moderate intensity. A similar proportion of patients in each treatment group who experienced major bleeding received platelets, clotting factors, or other hemostatic agents.

Conclusions: The combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin compared with aspirin alone increased major bleeding, mainly from the GI tract. Most excess bleeding occurred during the first year after randomization, was of mild or moderate intensity, and was managed with conventional supportive therapy. (Rivaroxaban for the Prevention of Major Cardiovascular Events in Coronary or Peripheral Artery Disease [COMPASS]; NCT01776424).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jacc.2019.07.065DOI Listing
September 2019

Modifiable risk factors, cardiovascular disease, and mortality in 155 722 individuals from 21 high-income, middle-income, and low-income countries (PURE): a prospective cohort study.

Lancet 2020 03 3;395(10226):795-808. Epub 2019 Sep 3.

Institut Universitaire de Cardiologie et de Pneumologie de Québec, Université Laval, Quebec, QC, Canada.

Background: Global estimates of the effect of common modifiable risk factors on cardiovascular disease and mortality are largely based on data from separate studies, using different methodologies. The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study overcomes these limitations by using similar methods to prospectively measure the effect of modifiable risk factors on cardiovascular disease and mortality across 21 countries (spanning five continents) grouped by different economic levels.

Methods: In this multinational, prospective cohort study, we examined associations for 14 potentially modifiable risk factors with mortality and cardiovascular disease in 155 722 participants without a prior history of cardiovascular disease from 21 high-income, middle-income, or low-income countries (HICs, MICs, or LICs). The primary outcomes for this paper were composites of cardiovascular disease events (defined as cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, stroke, and heart failure) and mortality. We describe the prevalence, hazard ratios (HRs), and population-attributable fractions (PAFs) for cardiovascular disease and mortality associated with a cluster of behavioural factors (ie, tobacco use, alcohol, diet, physical activity, and sodium intake), metabolic factors (ie, lipids, blood pressure, diabetes, obesity), socioeconomic and psychosocial factors (ie, education, symptoms of depression), grip strength, and household and ambient pollution. Associations between risk factors and the outcomes were established using multivariable Cox frailty models and using PAFs for the entire cohort, and also by countries grouped by income level. Associations are presented as HRs and PAFs with 95% CIs.

Findings: Between Jan 6, 2005, and Dec 4, 2016, 155 722 participants were enrolled and followed up for measurement of risk factors. 17 249 (11·1%) participants were from HICs, 102 680 (65·9%) were from MICs, and 35 793 (23·0%) from LICs. Approximately 70% of cardiovascular disease cases and deaths in the overall study population were attributed to modifiable risk factors. Metabolic factors were the predominant risk factors for cardiovascular disease (41·2% of the PAF), with hypertension being the largest (22·3% of the PAF). As a cluster, behavioural risk factors contributed most to deaths (26·3% of the PAF), although the single largest risk factor was a low education level (12·5% of the PAF). Ambient air pollution was associated with 13·9% of the PAF for cardiovascular disease, although different statistical methods were used for this analysis. In MICs and LICs, household air pollution, poor diet, low education, and low grip strength had stronger effects on cardiovascular disease or mortality than in HICs.

Interpretation: Most cardiovascular disease cases and deaths can be attributed to a small number of common, modifiable risk factors. While some factors have extensive global effects (eg, hypertension and education), others (eg, household air pollution and poor diet) vary by a country's economic level. Health policies should focus on risk factors that have the greatest effects on averting cardiovascular disease and death globally, with additional emphasis on risk factors of greatest importance in specific groups of countries.

Funding: Full funding sources are listed at the end of the paper (see Acknowledgments).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(19)32008-2DOI Listing
March 2020

Variations in common diseases, hospital admissions, and deaths in middle-aged adults in 21 countries from five continents (PURE): a prospective cohort study.

Lancet 2020 03 3;395(10226):785-794. Epub 2019 Sep 3.

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON, Canada. Electronic address:

Background: To our knowledge, no previous study has prospectively documented the incidence of common diseases and related mortality in high-income countries (HICs), middle-income countries (MICs), and low-income countries (LICs) with standardised approaches. Such information is key to developing global and context-specific health strategies. In our analysis of the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study, we aimed to evaluate differences in the incidence of common diseases, related hospital admissions, and related mortality in a large contemporary cohort of adults from 21 HICs, MICs, and LICs across five continents by use of standardised approaches.

Methods: The PURE study is a prospective, population-based cohort study of individuals aged 35-70 years who have been enrolled from 21 countries across five continents. The key outcomes were the incidence of fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular diseases, cancers, injuries, respiratory diseases, and hospital admissions, and we calculated the age-standardised and sex-standardised incidence of these events per 1000 person-years.

Findings: This analysis assesses the incidence of events in 162 534 participants who were enrolled in the first two phases of the PURE core study, between Jan 6, 2005, and Dec 4, 2016, and who were assessed for a median of 9·5 years (IQR 8·5-10·9). During follow-up, 11 307 (7·0%) participants died, 9329 (5·7%) participants had cardiovascular disease, 5151 (3·2%) participants had a cancer, 4386 (2·7%) participants had injuries requiring hospital admission, 2911 (1·8%) participants had pneumonia, and 1830 (1·1%) participants had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Cardiovascular disease occurred more often in LICs (7·1 cases per 1000 person-years) and in MICs (6·8 cases per 1000 person-years) than in HICs (4·3 cases per 1000 person-years). However, incident cancers, injuries, COPD, and pneumonia were most common in HICs and least common in LICs. Overall mortality rates in LICs (13·3 deaths per 1000 person-years) were double those in MICs (6·9 deaths per 1000 person-years) and four times higher than in HICs (3·4 deaths per 1000 person-years). This pattern of the highest mortality in LICs and the lowest in HICs was observed for all causes of death except cancer, where mortality was similar across country income levels. Cardiovascular disease was the most common cause of deaths overall (40%) but accounted for only 23% of deaths in HICs (vs 41% in MICs and 43% in LICs), despite more cardiovascular disease risk factors (as judged by INTERHEART risk scores) in HICs and the fewest such risk factors in LICs. The ratio of deaths from cardiovascular disease to those from cancer was 0·4 in HICs, 1·3 in MICs, and 3·0 in LICs, and four upper-MICs (Argentina, Chile, Turkey, and Poland) showed ratios similar to the HICs. Rates of first hospital admission and cardiovascular disease medication use were lowest in LICs and highest in HICs.

Interpretation: Among adults aged 35-70 years, cardiovascular disease is the major cause of mortality globally. However, in HICs and some upper-MICs, deaths from cancer are now more common than those from cardiovascular disease, indicating a transition in the predominant causes of deaths in middle-age. As cardiovascular disease decreases in many countries, mortality from cancer will probably become the leading cause of death. The high mortality in poorer countries is not related to risk factors, but it might be related to poorer access to health care.

Funding: Full funding sources are listed at the end of the paper (see Acknowledgments).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(19)32007-0DOI Listing
March 2020

Dulaglutide and cardiovascular outcomes in type 2 diabetes (REWIND): a double-blind, randomised placebo-controlled trial.

Lancet 2019 07 9;394(10193):121-130. Epub 2019 Jun 9.

Robert Koch Medical Centre, Sofia, Bulgaria.

Background: Three different glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists reduce cardiovascular outcomes in people with type 2 diabetes at high cardiovascular risk with high glycated haemoglobin A (HbA) concentrations. We assessed the effect of the GLP-1 receptor agonist dulaglutide on major adverse cardiovascular events when added to the existing antihyperglycaemic regimens of individuals with type 2 diabetes with and without previous cardiovascular disease and a wide range of glycaemic control.

Methods: This multicentre, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was done at 371 sites in 24 countries. Men and women aged at least 50 years with type 2 diabetes who had either a previous cardiovascular event or cardiovascular risk factors were randomly assigned (1:1) to either weekly subcutaneous injection of dulaglutide (1·5 mg) or placebo. Randomisation was done by a computer-generated random code with stratification by site. All investigators and participants were masked to treatment assignment. Participants were followed up at least every 6 months for incident cardiovascular and other serious clinical outcomes. The primary outcome was the first occurrence of the composite endpoint of non-fatal myocardial infarction, non-fatal stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes (including unknown causes), which was assessed in the intention-to-treat population. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01394952.

Findings: Between Aug 18, 2011, and Aug 14, 2013, 9901 participants (mean age 66·2 years [SD 6·5], median HbA 7·2% [IQR 6·6-8·1], 4589 [46·3%] women) were enrolled and randomly assigned to receive dulaglutide (n=4949) or placebo (n=4952). During a median follow-up of 5·4 years (IQR 5·1-5·9), the primary composite outcome occurred in 594 (12·0%) participants at an incidence rate of 2·4 per 100 person-years in the dulaglutide group and in 663 (13·4%) participants at an incidence rate of 2·7 per 100 person-years in the placebo group (hazard ratio [HR] 0·88, 95% CI 0·79-0·99; p=0·026). All-cause mortality did not differ between groups (536 [10·8%] in the dulaglutide group vs 592 [12·0%] in the placebo group; HR 0·90, 95% CI 0·80-1·01; p=0·067). 2347 (47·4%) participants assigned to dulaglutide reported a gastrointestinal adverse event during follow-up compared with 1687 (34·1%) participants assigned to placebo (p<0·0001).

Interpretation: Dulaglutide could be considered for the management of glycaemic control in middle-aged and older people with type 2 diabetes with either previous cardiovascular disease or cardiovascular risk factors.

Funding: Eli Lilly and Company.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(19)31149-3DOI Listing
July 2019

Dulaglutide and renal outcomes in type 2 diabetes: an exploratory analysis of the REWIND randomised, placebo-controlled trial.

Lancet 2019 07 9;394(10193):131-138. Epub 2019 Jun 9.

Robert Koch Medical Centre, Sofia, Bulgaria.

Background: Two glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists reduced renal outcomes in people with type 2 diabetes at risk for cardiovascular disease. We assessed the long-term effect of the GLP-1 receptor agonist dulaglutide on renal outcomes in an exploratory analysis of the REWIND trial of the effect of dulaglutide on cardiovascular disease.

Methods: REWIND was a multicentre, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial at 371 sites in 24 countries. Men and women aged at least 50 years with type 2 diabetes who had either a previous cardiovascular event or cardiovascular risk factors were randomly assigned (1:1) to either weekly subcutaneous injection of dulaglutide (1·5 mg) or placebo and followed up at least every 6 months for outcomes. Urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratios (UACRs) and estimated glomerular filtration rates (eGFRs) were estimated from urine and serum values measured in local laboratories every 12 months. The primary outcome (first occurrence of the composite endpoint of non-fatal myocardial infarction, non-fatal stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes), secondary outcomes (including a composite microvascular outcome), and safety outcomes of this trial have been reported elsewhere. In this exploratory analysis, we investigate the renal component of the composite microvascular outcome, defined as the first occurrence of new macroalbuminuria (UACR >33·9 mg/mmol), a sustained decline in eGFR of 30% or more from baseline, or chronic renal replacement therapy. Analyses were by intention to treat. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01394952.

Findings: Between Aug 18, 2011, and Aug 14, 2013, 9901 participants were enrolled and randomly assigned to receive dulaglutide (n=4949) or placebo (n=4952). At baseline, 791 (7·9%) had macroalbuminuria and mean eGFR was 76·9 mL/min per 1·73 m (SD 22·7). During a median follow-up of 5·4 years (IQR 5·1-5·9) comprising 51 820 person-years, the renal outcome developed in 848 (17·1%) participants at an incidence rate of 3·5 per 100 person-years in the dulaglutide group and in 970 (19·6%) participants at an incidence rate of 4·1 per 100 person-years in the placebo group (hazard ratio [HR] 0·85, 95% CI 0·77-0·93; p=0·0004). The clearest effect was for new macroalbuminuria (HR 0·77, 95% CI 0·68-0·87; p<0·0001), with HRs of 0·89 (0·78-1·01; p=0·066) for sustained decline in eGFR of 30% or more and 0·75 (0·39-1·44; p=0·39) for chronic renal replacement therapy.

Interpretation: Long-term use of dulaglutide was associated with reduced composite renal outcomes in people with type 2 diabetes.

Funding: Eli Lilly and Company.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(19)31150-XDOI Listing
July 2019

Safety of Proton Pump Inhibitors Based on a Large, Multi-Year, Randomized Trial of Patients Receiving Rivaroxaban or Aspirin.

Gastroenterology 2019 09 29;157(3):682-691.e2. Epub 2019 May 29.

The Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background & Aims: Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are effective at treating acid-related disorders. These drugs are well tolerated in the short term, but long-term treatment was associated with adverse events in observational studies. We aimed to confirm these findings in an adequately powered randomized trial.

Methods: We performed a 3 × 2 partial factorial double-blind trial of 17,598 participants with stable cardiovascular disease and peripheral artery disease randomly assigned to groups given pantoprazole (40 mg daily, n = 8791) or placebo (n = 8807). Participants were also randomly assigned to groups that received rivaroxaban (2.5 mg twice daily) with aspirin (100 mg once daily), rivaroxaban (5 mg twice daily), or aspirin (100 mg) alone. We collected data on development of pneumonia, Clostridium difficile infection, other enteric infections, fractures, gastric atrophy, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, chronic obstructive lung disease, dementia, cardiovascular disease, cancer, hospitalizations, and all-cause mortality every 6 months. Patients were followed up for a median of 3.01 years, with 53,152 patient-years of follow-up.

Results: There was no statistically significant difference between the pantoprazole and placebo groups in safety events except for enteric infections (1.4% vs 1.0% in the placebo group; odds ratio, 1.33; 95% confidence interval, 1.01-1.75). For all other safety outcomes, proportions were similar between groups except for C difficile infection, which was approximately twice as common in the pantoprazole vs the placebo group, although there were only 13 events, so this difference was not statistically significant.

Conclusions: In a large placebo-controlled randomized trial, we found that pantoprazole is not associated with any adverse event when used for 3 years, with the possible exception of an increased risk of enteric infections. ClinicalTrials.gov Number: NCT01776424.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2019.05.056DOI Listing
September 2019

Pantoprazole to Prevent Gastroduodenal Events in Patients Receiving Rivaroxaban and/or Aspirin in a Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial.

Gastroenterology 2019 08 2;157(2):403-412.e5. Epub 2019 May 2.

The Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background & Aims: Antiplatelets and anticoagulants are associated with increased upper gastrointestinal bleeding. We evaluated whether proton pump inhibitor therapy could reduce this risk.

Methods: We performed a 3 × 2 partial factorial double-blind trial of 17,598 participants with stable cardiovascular disease and peripheral artery disease. Participants were randomly assigned to groups given pantoprazole 40 mg daily or placebo, as well as rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily with aspirin 100 mg once daily, rivaroxaban 5 mg twice daily, or aspirin 100 mg alone. The primary outcome was time to first upper gastrointestinal event, defined as a composite of overt bleeding, upper gastrointestinal bleeding from a gastroduodenal lesion or of unknown origin, occult bleeding, symptomatic gastroduodenal ulcer or ≥5 erosions, upper gastrointestinal obstruction, or perforation.

Results: There was no significant difference in upper gastrointestinal events between the pantoprazole group (102 of 8791 events) and the placebo group (116 of 8807 events) (hazard ratio, 0.88; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.67-1.15). Pantoprazole significantly reduced bleeding of gastroduodenal lesions (hazard ratio, 0.52; 95% confidence interval, 0.28-0.94; P = .03); this reduction was greater when we used a post-hoc definition of bleeding gastroduodenal lesion (hazard ratio, 0.45; 95% confidence interval, 0.27-0.74), although the number needed to treat still was high (n = 982; 95% confidence interval, 609-2528).

Conclusions: In a randomized placebo-controlled trial, we found that routine use of proton pump inhibitors in patients receiving low-dose anticoagulation and/or aspirin for stable cardiovascular disease does not reduce upper gastrointestinal events, but may reduce bleeding from gastroduodenal lesions. ClinicalTrials.gov ID: NCT01776424.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2019.04.041DOI Listing
August 2019

Statin Use in Primary Prevention: A Simple Trial-Based Approach Compared With Guideline-Recommended Risk Algorithms for Selection of Eligible Patients.

Can J Cardiol 2019 05 19;35(5):644-652. Epub 2019 Mar 19.

Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton Health Sciences, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; Department of Medicine and Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton Health Sciences General Site, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background: Cardiovascular disease risk assessment tools help identify individuals likely to benefit from preventative therapies. In this study we compared outcomes using the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) risk algorithm and the Framingham Risk Score (FRS) tool in the Heart Outcomes Prevention Evaluation (HOPE)-3 study.

Methods: We compared outcomes using the ACC/AHA algorithm and the FRS with those seen in HOPE-3, which randomized participants to 10 mg rosuvastatin or placebo. The first coprimary outcome was the composite of death from cardiovascular causes, nonfatal myocardial infarction, or nonfatal stroke; second coprimary outcome additionally included heart failure, cardiac arrest, and revascularization.

Results: Relative risks using risk scores were similar to those observed in the HOPE-3. Hazards ratios for the first coprimary outcome according to risk categories of ≤ 10%, 10%-20%, and ≥ 20% using the ACC/AHA algorithm were 0.82 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.53-1.28), 0.72 (95% CI, 0.53-0.96), and 0.72 (95% CI, 0.55-0.93), and absolute risk reduction (ARR) of 0.18%, 1.33%, and 1.85%, respectively, over a median of 5.6 years. Corresponding results using the FRS were 0.69 (95% CI, 0.36-1.35), 0.73 (95% CI, 0.52-1.01), and 0.75 (95% CI, 0.60- 0.94); and ARR of 1.32%, 0.61%, and 1.43%. Hazard ratios for the second coprimary outcome were 0.77 (95% CI, 0.51-1.14), 0.73 (95% CI, 0.56-0.95), and 0.74 (95% CI, 0.58-0.94); and ARR of 0.36%, 1.49%, and 1.85%, using the ACC/AHA algorithm and 0.76 (95% CI, 0.41-1.41), 0.70 (95% CI, 0.52-0.95), and 0.76 (95% CI, 0.62-0.94); and ARR of 1.08%, 0.83%, and 1.56% using the FRS.

Conclusions: The pragmatic HOPE-3 trial approach identifies in an ethnically diverse primary prevention population individuals at intermediate risk who benefit from statin therapy using simple clinical characteristics without the need for complex, currently used risk assessment tools.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cjca.2019.03.002DOI Listing
May 2019

Mortality and cardiovascular and respiratory morbidity in individuals with impaired FEV (PURE): an international, community-based cohort study.

Lancet Glob Health 2019 05;7(5):e613-e623

Population Health Research Institute, Department of Medicine, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Background: The associations between the extent of forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV) impairment and mortality, incident cardiovascular disease, and respiratory hospitalisations are unclear, and how these associations might vary across populations is unknown.

Methods: In this international, community-based cohort study, we prospectively enrolled adults aged 35-70 years who had no intention of moving residences for 4 years from rural and urban communities across 17 countries. A portable spirometer was used to assess FEV. FEV values were standardised within countries for height, age, and sex, and expressed as a percentage of the country-specific predicted FEV value (FEV%). FEV% was categorised as no impairment (FEV% ≥0 SD from country-specific mean), mild impairment (FEV% <0 SD to -1 SD), moderate impairment (FEV% <-1 SD to -2 SDs), and severe impairment (FEV% <-2 SDs [ie, clinically abnormal range]). Follow-up was done every 3 years to collect information on mortality, cardiovascular disease outcomes (including myocardial infarction, stroke, sudden death, or congestive heart failure), and respiratory hospitalisations (from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, pneumonia, tuberculosis, or other pulmonary conditions). Fully adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) were calculated by multilevel Cox regression.

Findings: Among 126 359 adults with acceptable spirometry data available, during a median 7·8 years (IQR 5·6-9·5) of follow-up, 5488 (4·3%) deaths, 5734 (4·5%) cardiovascular disease events, and 1948 (1·5%) respiratory hospitalisation events occurred. Relative to the no impairment group, mild to severe FEV% impairments were associated with graded increases in mortality (HR 1·27 [95% CI 1·18-1·36] for mild, 1·74 [1·60-1·90] for moderate, and 2·54 [2·26-2·86] for severe impairment), cardiovascular disease (1·18 [1·10-1·26], 1·39 [1·28-1·51], 2·02 [1·75-2·32]), and respiratory hospitalisation (1·39 [1·24-1·56], 2·02 [1·75-2·32], 2·97 [2·45-3·60]), and this pattern persisted in subgroup analyses considering country income level and various baseline risk factors. Population-attributable risk for mortality (adjusted for age, sex, and country income) from mildly to moderately reduced FEV% (24·7% [22·2-27·2]) was larger than that from severely reduced FEV% (3·7% [2·1-5·2]) and from tobacco use (19·7% [17·2-22·3]), previous cardiovascular disease (5·5% [4·5-6·5]), and hypertension (17·1% [14·6-19·6]). Population-attributable risk for cardiovascular disease from mildly to moderately reduced FEV was 17·3% (14·8-19·7), second only to the contribution of hypertension (30·1% [27·6-32·5]).

Interpretation: FEV is an independent and generalisable predictor of mortality, cardiovascular disease, and respiratory hospitalisation, even across the clinically normal range (mild to moderate impairment).

Funding: Population Health Research Institute, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, AstraZeneca, Sanofi-Aventis, Boehringer Ingelheim, Servier, and GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis, and King Pharma. Additional funders are listed in the appendix.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(19)30070-1DOI Listing
May 2019

Joint association of urinary sodium and potassium excretion with cardiovascular events and mortality: prospective cohort study.

BMJ 2019 03 13;364:l772. Epub 2019 Mar 13.

Population Health Research Institute, DBCVS Research Institute, McMaster University, 237 Barton St East, Hamilton, ON L8L 2X2, Canada.

Objective: To evaluate the joint association of sodium and potassium urinary excretion (as surrogate measures of intake) with cardiovascular events and mortality, in the context of current World Health Organization recommendations for daily intake (<2.0 g sodium, >3.5 g potassium) in adults.

Design: International prospective cohort study.

Setting: 18 high, middle, and low income countries, sampled from urban and rural communities.

Participants: 103 570 people who provided morning fasting urine samples.

Main Outcome Measures: Association of estimated 24 hour urinary sodium and potassium excretion (surrogates for intake) with all cause mortality and major cardiovascular events, using multivariable Cox regression. A six category variable for joint sodium and potassium was generated: sodium excretion (low (<3 g/day), moderate (3-5 g/day), and high (>5 g/day) sodium intakes) by potassium excretion (greater/equal or less than median 2.1 g/day).

Results: Mean estimated sodium and potassium urinary excretion were 4.93 g/day and 2.12 g/day, respectively. After a median follow-up of 8.2 years, 7884 (6.1%) participants had died or experienced a major cardiovascular event. Increasing urinary sodium excretion was positively associated with increasing potassium excretion (unadjusted r=0.34), and only 0.002% had a concomitant urinary excretion of <2.0 g/day of sodium and >3.5 g/day of potassium. A J-shaped association was observed of sodium excretion and inverse association of potassium excretion with death and cardiovascular events. For joint sodium and potassium excretion categories, the lowest risk of death and cardiovascular events occurred in the group with moderate sodium excretion (3-5 g/day) and higher potassium excretion (21.9% of cohort). Compared with this reference group, the combinations of low potassium with low sodium excretion (hazard ratio 1.23, 1.11 to 1.37; 7.4% of cohort) and low potassium with high sodium excretion (1.21, 1.11 to 1.32; 13.8% of cohort) were associated with the highest risk, followed by low sodium excretion (1.19, 1.02 to 1.38; 3.3% of cohort) and high sodium excretion (1.10, 1.02 to 1.18; 29.6% of cohort) among those with potassium excretion greater than the median. Higher potassium excretion attenuated the increased cardiovascular risk associated with high sodium excretion (P for interaction=0.007).

Conclusions: These findings suggest that the simultaneous target of low sodium intake (<2 g/day) with high potassium intake (>3.5 g/day) is extremely uncommon. Combined moderate sodium intake (3-5 g/day) with high potassium intake is associated with the lowest risk of mortality and cardiovascular events.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l772DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6415648PMC
March 2019

Effects of blood pressure and lipid lowering on cognition: Results from the HOPE-3 study.

Neurology 2019 03 27;92(13):e1435-e1446. Epub 2019 Feb 27.

From the Population Health Research Institute (J.B., M. O., B.S., E.M.L., M.S., S.F.L., J.M.P., R.H., S.Y.) and Hamilton Health Sciences (J.B.), School of Rehabilitation Science, McMaster University, Ontario; Institut Universitaire de Cardiologie et Pneumologie de Québec (G.D.), Université Laval, Québec; Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute (L.A.L.), St. Michael's Hospital, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Research Board Clinical Research Facility (M.O.), Department of Medicine, NUI Galway, Ireland; Instituto Cardiovascular de Rosario (R.D.), Argentina; Diabetes Research Centre (K.K.), University of Leicester; Department of Cardiovascular Sciences and the National Institute for Health Research (W.D.T.), Leicester Cardiovascular Biomedical Research Unit, Glenfield Hospital, University of Leicester, UK; College of Medicine (A.D.), University of the Philippines, Manila, Philippines; Lady Davis Carmel Medical Center (B.S.L.), Ruth and Bruce Rappaport School of Medicine, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa; Dante Pazzanese Institute of Cardiology (A.A.), São Paulo, Brazil; Department of Medical Sciences (C.H.), Cardiology, Uppsala Clinical Research Center, Uppsala University, Sweden; Semmelweis University (M.K.), Budapest, Hungary; Monash University (C.R.), Melbourne, Victoria; School of Public Health (C.M.R.), Curtin University, Perth, Australia; and Hatter Institute for Cardiovascular Research in Africa (K.S.), Department of Medicine, University of Cape Town, Soweto Cardiovascular Research Group, South Africa.

Objective: To assess whether long-term treatment with candesartan/hydrochlorothiazide, rosuvastatin, or their combination can slow cognitive decline in older people at intermediate cardiovascular risk.

Methods: The Heart Outcomes Prevention Evaluation-3 (HOPE-3) study was a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial using a 2 × 2 factorial design. Participants without known cardiovascular disease or need for treatment were randomized to candesartan (16 mg) plus hydrochlorothiazide (12.5 mg) or placebo and to rosuvastatin (10 mg) or placebo. Participants who were ≥70 years of age completed the Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST), the modified Montreal Cognitive Assessment, and the Trail Making Test Part B at baseline and study end.

Results: Cognitive assessments were completed by 2,361 participants from 228 centers in 21 countries. Compared with placebo, candesartan/hydrochlorothiazide reduced systolic blood pressure by 6.0 mm Hg, and rosuvastatin reduced low-density lipoprotein cholesterol by 24.8 mg/dL. Participants were followed up for 5.7 years (median), and 1,626 completed both baseline and study-end assessments. Mean participant age was 74 years (SD ±3.5 years); 59% were women; 45% had hypertension; and 24% had ≥12 years of education. The mean difference in change in DSST scores was -0.91 (95% confidence interval [CI] -2.25 to 0.42) for candesartan/hydrochlorothiazide compared with placebo, -0.54 (95% CI -1.88 to 0.80) for rosuvastatin compared with placebo, and -1.43 (95% CI -3.37 to 0.50) for combination therapy vs double placebo. No significant differences were found for other measures.

Conclusions: Long-term blood pressure lowering with candesartan plus hydrochlorothiazide, rosuvastatin, or their combination did not significantly affect cognitive decline in older people.

Clinicaltrialsgov Identifier: NCT00468923.

Classification Of Evidence: This study provides Class II evidence that for older people, candesartan plus hydrochlorothiazide, rosuvastatin, or their combination does not significantly affect cognitive decline.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000007174DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6453765PMC
March 2019

Effects of basal insulin glargine and omega-3 on lower limb arterial disease outcome in patients with dysglycaemia: An analysis of the Outcome Reduction with an Initial Glargine INtervention (ORIGIN) trial.

Diabetes Obes Metab 2019 06 20;21(6):1502-1505. Epub 2019 Mar 20.

Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton General Hospital, McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada.

The impact of insulin or omega-3 supplements on the incidence and progression of peripheral artery disease (PAD) in patients with dysglycaemia has not been well studied. The Outcome Reduction with an Initial Glargine INtervention (ORIGIN) trial randomized participants with dysglycaemia and cardiovascular risk factors to titrated insulin glargine vs standard care, and to either 1 g of omega-3 per day or placebo. We assessed incident PAD, defined as the composite of either asymptomatic or symptomatic PAD according to the randomized interventions in the 11 119 ORIGIN participants whose baseline ankle-brachial index (ABI) was >0.9 (no PAD), and PAD progression in the 971 ORIGIN participants whose baseline ABI was ≤0.9. Hazard ratios (HR) were adjusted for confounders. During a 6.2-year follow-up period, allocation to insulin glargine vs standard care had a neutral effect on the composite of PAD incidence (HR, 0.99; 95% CI, 0.86-1.15) and progression (HR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.63-1.22). Similar findings were noted for allocation to omega-3 vs placebo for PAD incidence (HR, 1.02; 95% CI, 0.89-1.18) and progression (HR, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.67-1.28). In this large study, neither insulin glargine nor omega-3 affected the incidence or progression of PAD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/dom.13674DOI Listing
June 2019

Rivaroxaban, Aspirin, or Both to Prevent Early Coronary Bypass Graft Occlusion: The COMPASS-CABG Study.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2019 01;73(2):121-130

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background: Patients with recent coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery are at risk for early graft failure, which is associated with a risk of myocardial infarction and death. In the COMPASS (Cardiovascular OutcoMes for People Using Anticoagulation StrategieS) trial, rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily plus aspirin 100 mg once daily compared with aspirin 100 mg once daily reduced the primary major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) outcome of cardiovascular death, stroke, or myocardial infarction. Rivaroxaban 5 mg twice daily alone did not significantly reduce MACE.

Objectives: This pre-planned substudy sought to determine whether the COMPASS treatments are more effective than aspirin alone for preventing graft failure and MACE after CABG surgery.

Methods: The substudy randomized 1,448 COMPASS trial patients 4 to 14 days after CABG surgery to receive the combination of rivaroxaban plus aspirin, rivaroxaban alone, or aspirin alone. The primary outcome was graft failure, diagnosed by computed tomography angiogram 1 year after surgery.

Results: The combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin and the regimen of rivaroxaban alone did not reduce the graft failure rates compared with aspirin alone (combination vs. aspirin: 113 [9.1%] vs. 91 [8.0%] failed grafts; odds ratio [OR]: 1.13; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.82 to 1.57; p = 0.45; rivaroxaban alone vs. aspirin: 92 [7.8%] vs. 92 [8.0%] failed grafts; OR: 0.95; 95% CI: 0.67 to 1.33; p = 0.75). Compared with aspirin, the combination was associated with fewer MACE (12 [2.4%] vs. 16 [3.5%]; hazard ratio [HR]: 0.69; 95% CI: 0.33 to 1.47; p = 0.34), whereas rivaroxaban alone was not (16 [3.3%] vs. 16 [3.5%]; HR: 0.99, CI: 0.50 to 1.99; p = 0.98). There was no fatal bleeding or tamponade within 30 days of randomization.

Conclusions: The combination of rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily plus aspirin or rivaroxaban 5 mg twice daily alone compared with aspirin alone did not reduce graft failure in patients with recent CABG surgery, but the combination of rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily plus aspirin was associated with similar reductions in MACE, as observed in the larger COMPASS trial. (Cardiovascular OutcoMes for People Using Anticoagulation StrategieS [COMPASS]; NCT01776424).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jacc.2018.10.048DOI Listing
January 2019

Availability and affordability of essential medicines for diabetes across high-income, middle-income, and low-income countries: a prospective epidemiological study.

Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol 2018 10 28;6(10):798-808. Epub 2018 Aug 28.

Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Background: Data are scarce on the availability and affordability of essential medicines for diabetes. Our aim was to examine the availability and affordability of metformin, sulfonylureas, and insulin across multiple regions of the world and explore the effect of these on medicine use.

Methods: In the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study, participants aged 35-70 years (n=156 625) were recruited from 110 803 households, in 604 communities and 22 countries; availability (presence of any dose of medication in the pharmacy on the day of audit) and medicine cost data were collected from pharmacies with the Environmental Profile of a Community's Health audit tool. Our primary analysis was to describe the availability and affordability of metformin and insulin and also commonly used and prescribed combinations of two medicines for diabetes management (two oral drugs, metformin plus a sulphonylurea [either glibenclamide (also known as glyburide) or gliclazide] and one oral drug plus insulin [metformin plus insulin]). Medicines were defined as affordable if the cost of medicines was less than 20% of capacity-to-pay (the household income minus food expenditure). Our analyses included data collected in pharmacies and data from representative samples of households. Data on availability were ascertained during the pharmacy audit, as were data on cost of medications. These cost data were used to estimate the cost of a month's supply of essential medicines for diabetes. We estimated affordability of medicines using income data from household surveys.

Findings: Metformin was available in 113 (100%) of 113 pharmacies from high-income countries, 112 (88·2%) of 127 pharmacies in upper-middle-income countries, 179 (86·1%) of 208 pharmacies in lower-middle-income countries, 44 (64·7%) of 68 pharmacies in low-income countries (excluding India), and 88 (100%) of 88 pharmacies in India. Insulin was available in 106 (93·8%) pharmacies in high-income countries, 51 (40·2%) pharmacies in upper-middle-income countries, 61 (29·3%) pharmacies in lower-middle-income countries, seven (10·3%) pharmacies in lower-income countries, and 67 (76·1%) of 88 pharmacies in India. We estimated 0·7% of households in high-income countries and 26·9% of households in low-income countries could not afford metformin and 2·8% of households in high-income countries and 63·0% of households in low-income countries could not afford insulin. Among the 13 569 (8·6% of PURE participants) that reported a diagnosis of diabetes, 1222 (74·0%) participants reported diabetes medicine use in high-income countries compared with 143 (29·6%) participants in low-income countries. In multilevel models, availability and affordability were significantly associated with use of diabetes medicines.

Interpretation: Availability and affordability of essential diabetes medicines are poor in low-income and middle-income countries. Awareness of these global differences might importantly drive change in access for patients with diabetes.

Funding: Full funding sources listed at the end of the paper (see Acknowledgments).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2213-8587(18)30233-XDOI Listing
October 2018

Urinary sodium excretion, blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and mortality: a community-level prospective epidemiological cohort study.

Lancet 2018 08 9;392(10146):496-506. Epub 2018 Aug 9.

Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton Health Sciences and McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada; Department of Health Research Methods, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada; Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Background: WHO recommends that populations consume less than 2 g/day sodium as a preventive measure against cardiovascular disease, but this target has not been achieved in any country. This recommendation is primarily based on individual-level data from short-term trials of blood pressure (BP) without data relating low sodium intake to reduced cardiovascular events from randomised trials or observational studies. We investigated the associations between community-level mean sodium and potassium intake, cardiovascular disease, and mortality.

Methods: The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology study is ongoing in 21 countries. Here we report an analysis done in 18 countries with data on clinical outcomes. Eligible participants were adults aged 35-70 years without cardiovascular disease, sampled from the general population. We used morning fasting urine to estimate 24 h sodium and potassium excretion as a surrogate for intake. We assessed community-level associations between sodium and potassium intake and BP in 369 communities (all >50 participants) and cardiovascular disease and mortality in 255 communities (all >100 participants), and used individual-level data to adjust for known confounders.

Findings: 95 767 participants in 369 communities were assessed for BP and 82 544 in 255 communities for cardiovascular outcomes with follow-up for a median of 8·1 years. 82 (80%) of 103 communities in China had a mean sodium intake greater than 5 g/day, whereas in other countries 224 (84%) of 266 communities had a mean intake of 3-5 g/day. Overall, mean systolic BP increased by 2·86 mm Hg per 1 g increase in mean sodium intake, but positive associations were only seen among the communities in the highest tertile of sodium intake (p<0·0001 for heterogeneity). The association between mean sodium intake and major cardiovascular events showed significant deviations from linearity (p=0·043) due to a significant inverse association in the lowest tertile of sodium intake (lowest tertile <4·43 g/day, mean intake 4·04 g/day, range 3·42-4·43; change -1·00 events per 1000 years, 95% CI -2·00 to -0·01, p=0·0497), no association in the middle tertile (middle tertile 4·43-5·08 g/day, mean intake 4·70 g/day, 4·44-5.05; change 0·24 events per 1000 years, -2·12 to 2·61, p=0·8391), and a positive but non-significant association in the highest tertile (highest tertile >5·08 g/day, mean intake 5·75 g/day, >5·08-7·49; change 0·37 events per 1000 years, -0·03 to 0·78, p=0·0712). A strong association was seen with stroke in China (mean sodium intake 5·58 g/day, 0·42 events per 1000 years, 95% CI 0·16 to 0·67, p=0·0020) compared with in other countries (4·49 g/day, -0·26 events, -0·46 to -0·06, p=0·0124; p<0·0001 for heterogeneity). All major cardiovascular outcomes decreased with increasing potassium intake in all countries.

Interpretation: Sodium intake was associated with cardiovascular disease and strokes only in communities where mean intake was greater than 5 g/day. A strategy of sodium reduction in these communities and countries but not in others might be appropriate.

Funding: Population Health Research Institute, Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Canadian Institutes of Health Canada Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research, Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, and European Research Council.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)31376-XDOI Listing
August 2018

Rationale, design, and baseline participant characteristics in the MRI and cognitive substudy of the cardiovascular outcomes for people using anticoagulation strategies trial.

Int J Stroke 2019 04 30;14(3):270-281. Epub 2018 Jul 30.

1 Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background: Covert vascular disease of the brain manifests as infarcts, white matter hyperintensities, and microbleeds on MRI. Their cumulative effect is often a decline in cognition, motor impairment, and psychiatric disorders. Preventive therapies for covert brain ischemia have not been established but represent a huge unmet clinical need.

Aims: The MRI substudy examines the effects of the antithrombotic regimens in COMPASS on incident covert brain infarcts (the primary outcome), white matter hyperintensities, and cognitive and functional status in a sample of consenting COMPASS participants without contraindications to MRI.

Methods: COMPASS is a randomized superiority trial testing rivaroxaban 2.5 mg bid plus acetylsalicylic acid 100 mg and rivaroxaban 5 mg bid against acetylsalicylic acid 100 mg per day for the combined endpoint of MI, stroke, and cardiovascular death in individuals with stable coronary artery disease or peripheral artery disease. T1-weighted, T2-weighted, T2*-weighted, and FLAIR images were obtained close to randomization and near the termination of assigned antithrombotic therapy; biomarker and genetic samples at randomization and one month, and cognitive and functional assessment at randomization, after two years and at the end of study.

Results: Between March 2013 and May 2016, 1905 participants were recruited from 86 centers in 16 countries. Of these participants, 1760 underwent baseline MRI scans that were deemed technically adequate for interpretation. The mean age at entry of participants with interpretable MRI was 71 years and 23.5% were women. Coronary artery disease was present in 90.4% and 28.1% had peripheral artery disease. Brain infarcts were present in 34.8%, 29.3% had cerebral microbleeds, and 93.0% had white matter hyperintensities. The median Montreal Cognitive Assessment score was 26 (interquartile range 23-28).

Conclusions: The COMPASS MRI substudy will examine the effect of the antithrombotic interventions on MRI-determined covert brain infarcts and cognition. Demonstration of a therapeutic effect of the antithrombotic regimens on brain infarcts would have implications for prevention of cognitive decline and provide insight into the pathogenesis of vascular cognitive decline.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1747493018784478DOI Listing
April 2019

Effects of Lipid-Lowering and Antihypertensive Treatments in Addition to Healthy Lifestyles in Primary Prevention: An Analysis of the HOPE-3 Trial.

J Am Heart Assoc 2018 07 22;7(15). Epub 2018 Jul 22.

Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton General Hospital, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background: It is not clear whether the effects of lipid-lowering or antihypertensive medications are influenced by adherence to healthy lifestyle factors. We assessed the effects of both drug interventions in subgroups by the number of healthy lifestyle factors in participants in the HOPE-3 (Heart Outcomes Prevention Evaluation) trial.

Methods And Results: In this primary prevention trial, 4 healthy lifestyle factors (nonsmoking status, physical activity, optimal body weight, and healthy diet) were recorded in 12 521 participants who were at intermediate risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and were randomized to rosuvastatin, candesartan/hydrochlorothiazide, their combination, or matched placebos. Median follow-up was 5.6 years. The outcome was a composite of CVD events. Adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using Cox regression models. Participants with ≥2 healthy lifestyle factors had a lower rate of CVD compared with those with fewer factors (HR: 0.85; 95% CI, 0.73-1.00). Rosuvastatin reduced CVD events in participants with ≥2 healthy lifestyle factors (HR: 0.74; 95% CI, 0.62-0.90) and in participants with <2 factors (HR: 0.79; 95% CI, 0.61-1.01). Consistent results were observed with combination therapy (≥2 factors: HR: 0.74; 95% CI, 0.57-0.97; <2 factors: HR: 0.61; 95% CI, 0.43-0.88). Candesartan/hydrochlorothiazide tends to reduce CVD only in participants with <2 healthy lifestyle factors (HR: 0.78; 95% CI, 0.61-1.00).

Conclusions: Healthy lifestyles are associated with lower CVD. Rosuvastatin alone and combined with candesartan/hydrochlorothiazide is beneficial regardless of healthy lifestyle status; however, the benefit of antihypertensive treatment appears to be limited to patients with less healthy lifestyles.

Clinical Trial Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT00239681.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.118.008918DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6201479PMC
July 2018

Impact of treatment strategies on outcomes in patients with stable coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus according to presenting angina severity: A pooled analysis of three federally-funded randomized trials.

Atherosclerosis 2018 10 1;277:186-194. Epub 2018 Jun 1.

Quebec Heart and Lung University Institute, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

Background And Aims: The impact of treatment strategies on outcomes in patients with stable coronary artery disease (CAD) and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) according to presenting angina has not been rigorously assessed.

Methods: We performed a patient-level pooled-analysis (n = 5027) of patients with stable CAD and T2DM randomized to optimal medical therapy [OMT], percutaneous coronary intervention [PCI] + OMT, or coronary artery bypass grafting [CABG] + OMT. Endpoints were death/myocardial infarction (MI)/stroke, post-randomization revascularization (both over 5 years), and angina control at 1 year.

Results: Increasing severity of baseline angina was associated with higher rates of death/MI/stroke (p = 0.009) and increased need for post-randomization revascularization (p = 0.001); after multivariable adjustment, only association with post-randomization revascularization remained significant. Baseline angina severity did not influence the superiority of CABG + OMT to reduce the rate of death/MI/stroke and post-randomization revascularization compared to other strategies. CABG + OMT was superior for angina control at 1 year compared to both PCI + OMT and OMT alone but only in patients with ≥ Class II severity at baseline. Comparisons between PCI + OMT and OMT were neutral except that PCI + OMT was superior to OMT for reducing the rate of post-randomization revascularization irrespective of presenting angina severity.

Conclusions: Presenting angina severity did not influence the superiority of CABG + OMT with respect to 5-year rates of death/MI/stroke and need for post-randomization revascularization. Presenting angina severity minimally influenced relative benefits for angina control at 1 year.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2018.04.005DOI Listing
October 2018

Inequalities in the use of secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease by socioeconomic status: evidence from the PURE observational study.

Lancet Glob Health 2018 03;6(3):e292-e301

Centre for Global Chronic Conditions, London School of Tropical Medicine, London, UK.

Background: There is little evidence on the use of secondary prevention medicines for cardiovascular disease by socioeconomic groups in countries at different levels of economic development.

Methods: We assessed use of antiplatelet, cholesterol, and blood-pressure-lowering drugs in 8492 individuals with self-reported cardiovascular disease from 21 countries enrolled in the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study. Defining one or more drugs as a minimal level of secondary prevention, wealth-related inequality was measured using the Wagstaff concentration index, scaled from -1 (pro-poor) to 1 (pro-rich), standardised by age and sex. Correlations between inequalities and national health-related indicators were estimated.

Findings: The proportion of patients with cardiovascular disease on three medications ranged from 0% in South Africa (95% CI 0-1·7), Tanzania (0-3·6), and Zimbabwe (0-5·1), to 49·3% in Canada (44·4-54·3). Proportions receiving at least one drug varied from 2·0% (95% CI 0·5-6·9) in Tanzania to 91·4% (86·6-94·6) in Sweden. There was significant (p<0·05) pro-rich inequality in Saudi Arabia, China, Colombia, India, Pakistan, and Zimbabwe. Pro-poor distributions were observed in Sweden, Brazil, Chile, Poland, and the occupied Palestinian territory. The strongest predictors of inequality were public expenditure on health and overall use of secondary prevention medicines.

Interpretation: Use of medication for secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease is alarmingly low. In many countries with the lowest use, pro-rich inequality is greatest. Policies associated with an equal or pro-poor distribution include free medications and community health programmes to support adherence to medications.

Funding: Full funding sources listed at the end of the paper (see Acknowledgments).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(18)30031-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5905400PMC
March 2018

Availability and affordability of blood pressure-lowering medicines and the effect on blood pressure control in high-income, middle-income, and low-income countries: an analysis of the PURE study data.

Lancet Public Health 2017 09 5;2(9):e411-e419. Epub 2017 Sep 5.

Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton Health Sciences and McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada. Electronic address:

Background: Hypertension is considered the most important risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, but its control is poor worldwide. We aimed to assess the availability and affordability of blood pressure-lowering medicines, and the association with use of these medicines and blood pressure control in countries at varying levels of economic development.

Methods: We analysed the availability, costs, and affordability of blood pressure-lowering medicines with data recorded from 626 communities in 20 countries participating in the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiological (PURE) study. Medicines were considered available if they were present in the local pharmacy when surveyed, and affordable if their combined cost was less than 20% of the households' capacity to pay. We related information about availability and affordability to use of these medicines and blood pressure control with multilevel mixed-effects logistic regression models, and compared results for high-income, upper-middle-income, lower-middle-income, and low-income countries. Data for India are presented separately because it has a large generic pharmaceutical industry and a higher availability of medicines than other countries at the same economic level.

Findings: The availability of two or more classes of blood pressure-lowering drugs was lower in low-income and middle-income countries (except for India) than in high-income countries. The proportion of communities with four drug classes available was 94% in high-income countries (108 of 115 communities), 76% in India (68 of 90), 71% in upper-middle-income countries (90 of 126), 47% in lower-middle-income countries (107 of 227), and 13% in low-income countries (nine of 68). The proportion of households unable to afford two blood pressure-lowering medicines was 31% in low-income countries (1069 of 3479 households), 9% in middle-income countries (5602 of 65 471), and less than 1% in high-income countries (44 of 10 880). Participants with known hypertension in communities that had all four drug classes available were more likely to use at least one blood pressure-lowering medicine (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 2·23, 95% CI 1·59-3·12); p<0·0001), combination therapy (1·53, 1·13-2·07; p=0·054), and have their blood pressure controlled (2·06, 1·69-2·50; p<0·0001) than were those in communities where blood pressure-lowering medicines were not available. Participants with known hypertension from households able to afford four blood pressure-lowering drug classes were more likely to use at least one blood pressure-lowering medicine (adjusted OR 1·42, 95% CI 1·25-1·62; p<0·0001), combination therapy (1·26, 1·08-1·47; p=0·0038), and have their blood pressure controlled (1·13, 1·00-1·28; p=0·0562) than were those unable to afford the medicines.

Interpretation: A large proportion of communities in low-income and middle-income countries do not have access to more than one blood pressure-lowering medicine and, when available, they are often not affordable. These factors are associated with poor blood pressure control. Ensuring access to affordable blood pressure-lowering medicines is essential for control of hypertension in low-income and middle-income countries.

Funding: Population Health Research Institute, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, Canadian Institutes of Health Research Strategy for Patient Oriented Research through the Ontario SPOR Support Unit, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, pharmaceutical companies (with major contributions from AstraZeneca [Canada], Sanofi Aventis [France and Canada], Boehringer Ingelheim [Germany amd Canada], Servier, and GlaxoSmithKline), Novartis and King Pharma, and national or local organisations in participating countries.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2468-2667(17)30141-XDOI Listing
September 2017

Rivaroxaban with or without aspirin in patients with stable coronary artery disease: an international, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

Lancet 2018 01 10;391(10117):205-218. Epub 2017 Nov 10.

Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Background: Coronary artery disease is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, and is a consequence of acute thrombotic events involving activation of platelets and coagulation proteins. Factor Xa inhibitors and aspirin each reduce thrombotic events but have not yet been tested in combination or against each other in patients with stable coronary artery disease.

Methods: In this multicentre, double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, outpatient trial, patients with stable coronary artery disease or peripheral artery disease were recruited at 602 hospitals, clinics, or community centres in 33 countries. This paper reports on patients with coronary artery disease. Eligible patients with coronary artery disease had to have had a myocardial infarction in the past 20 years, multi-vessel coronary artery disease, history of stable or unstable angina, previous multi-vessel percutaneous coronary intervention, or previous multi-vessel coronary artery bypass graft surgery. After a 30-day run in period, patients were randomly assigned (1:1:1) to receive rivaroxaban (2·5 mg orally twice a day) plus aspirin (100 mg once a day), rivaroxaban alone (5 mg orally twice a day), or aspirin alone (100 mg orally once a day). Randomisation was computer generated. Each treatment group was double dummy, and the patients, investigators, and central study staff were masked to treatment allocation. The primary outcome of the COMPASS trial was the occurrence of myocardial infarction, stroke, or cardiovascular death. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01776424, and is closed to new participants.

Findings: Between March 12, 2013, and May 10, 2016, 27 395 patients were enrolled to the COMPASS trial, of whom 24 824 patients had stable coronary artery disease from 558 centres. The combination of rivaroxaban plus aspirin reduced the primary outcome more than aspirin alone (347 [4%] of 8313 vs 460 [6%] of 8261; hazard ratio [HR] 0·74, 95% CI 0·65-0·86, p<0·0001). By comparison, treatment with rivaroxaban alone did not significantly improve the primary outcome when compared with treatment with aspirin alone (411 [5%] of 8250 vs 460 [6%] of 8261; HR 0·89, 95% CI 0·78-1·02, p=0·094). Combined rivaroxaban plus aspirin treatment resulted in more major bleeds than treatment with aspirin alone (263 [3%] of 8313 vs 158 [2%] of 8261; HR 1·66, 95% CI 1·37-2·03, p<0·0001), and similarly, more bleeds were seen in the rivaroxaban alone group than in the aspirin alone group (236 [3%] of 8250 vs 158 [2%] of 8261; HR 1·51, 95% CI 1·23-1·84, p<0·0001). The most common site of major bleeding was gastrointestinal, occurring in 130 [2%] patients who received combined rivaroxaban plus aspirin, in 84 [1%] patients who received rivaroxaban alone, and in 61 [1%] patients who received aspirin alone. Rivaroxaban plus aspirin reduced mortality when compared with aspirin alone (262 [3%] of 8313 vs 339 [4%] of 8261; HR 0·77, 95% CI 0·65-0·90, p=0·0012).

Interpretation: In patients with stable coronary artery disease, addition of rivaroxaban to aspirin lowered major vascular events, but increased major bleeding. There was no significant increase in intracranial bleeding or other critical organ bleeding. There was also a significant net benefit in favour of rivaroxaban plus aspirin and deaths were reduced by 23%. Thus, addition of rivaroxaban to aspirin has the potential to substantially reduce morbidity and mortality from coronary artery disease worldwide.

Funding: Bayer AG.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)32458-3DOI Listing
January 2018