ABSTRACT: We assessed the use and effects of acute intravenous and later oral atenolol treatment in a prospectively planned post hoc analysis of the GUSTO-I dataset.
Early intravenous beta blockade is generally recommended after myocardial infarction, especially for patients with tachycardia and/or hypertension and those without heart failure.
Besides one of four thrombolytic strategies, patients without hypotension, bradycardia or signs of heart failure were to receive atenolol 5 mg intravenously as soon as possible, another 5 mg intravenously 10 min later and 50 to 100 mg orally daily during hospitalization. We compared the 30-day mortality of patients given no atenolol (n=10,073), any atenolol (n=30,771), any intravenous atenolol (n=18,200), only oral atenolol (n=12,545) and both intravenous and oral drug (n=16,406), after controlling for baseline differences and for early deaths (before oral atenolol could be given).
Patients given any atenolol had a lower baseline risk than those not given atenolol. Adjusted 30-day mortality was significantly lower in atenolol-treated patients, but patients treated with intravenous and oral atenolol treatment vs. oral treatment alone were more likely to die (odds ratio, 1.3; 95% confidence interval, 1.0 to 1.5; p=0.02). Subgroups had similar rates of stroke, intracranial hemorrhage and reinfarction, but intravenous atenolol use was associated with more heart failure, shock, recurrent ischemia and pacemaker use than oral atenolol use.
Although atenolol appears to improve outcomes after thrombolysis for myocardial infarction, early intravenous atenolol seems of limited value. The best approach for most patients may be to begin oral atenolol once stable.
Journal of the American College of Cardiology 10/1998; 32(3):634-40. · 14.16 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: Patients with acute myocardial infarction who were treated with accelerated tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) (given over a period of 1 1/2 hours rather than the conventional 3 hours, and with two thirds of the dose given in the first 30 minutes) had a 30-day mortality that was 15 percent lower than that of patients treated with streptokinase in the Global Utilization of Streptokinase and Tissue Plasminogen Activator for Occluded Coronary Arteries (GUSTO) study. This was equivalent to an absolute decrease of 1 percent in 30-day mortality. We sought to assess whether the use of t-PA, as compared with streptokinase, is cost effective.
Our primary, or base-case, analysis of cost effectiveness used data from the GUSTO study and life expectancy projected on the basis of the records of survivors of myocardial infarction in the Duke Cardiovascular Disease Database. In the primary analysis, we assumed that there were no additional treatment costs due to the use of t-PA after the first year and that the comparative survival benefit of t-PA was still evident one year after enrollment.
One year after enrollment, patients who received t-PA had both higher costs ($2,845) and a higher survival rate (an increase of 1.1 percent, or 11 per 1000 patients treated) than streptokinase-treated patients. On the basis of the projected life expectancy of each treatment group, the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio--with both future costs and benefits discounted at 5 percent per year--was $32,678 per year of life saved. The use of t-PA was least cost effective in younger patients and most cost effective in older patients. At all ages, the use of t-PA in patients with anterior infarctions yielded more favorable cost-effectiveness values. In our secondary analyses, the cost-effectiveness values were most sensitive to a lowering of the projected long-term survival benefits of t-PA and to moderate or greater increases in the projected medical costs for patients in the t-PA group after the first year. In contrast, our results were not sensitive to even very unfavorable assumptions about the additional costs associated with the higher rate of disabling stroke that was noted in patients treated with t-PA in the GUSTO study.
The cost effectiveness of treatment with accelerated t-PA rather than streptokinase compares favorably with that of other therapies whose added medical benefit for dollars spent is judged by society to be worthwhile.
New England Journal of Medicine 06/1995; 332(21):1418-24. · 53.30 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: Much attention has been directed to the use of medical resources and to patients' outcomes in Canada as compared with the United States. We compared U.S. and Canadian patients with respect to their use of medical resources and their quality of life during the year after acute myocardial infarction.
A total of 2600 U.S. and 400 Canadian patients were randomly selected from the Global Utilization of Streptokinase and t-PA for Occluded Coronary Arteries (GUSTO) trial. Base-line data from their initial hospitalizations were analyzed, and the patients were then interviewed by telephone 30 days, 6 months, and 1 year after myocardial infarction to determine their use of medical care and quality of life.
The Canadian patients typically stayed in the hospital one day longer (P = 0.009) than the U.S. patients but had a much lower rate of cardiac catheterization (25 percent vs. 72 percent, P < 0.001), coronary angioplasty (11 percent vs. 29 percent, P < 0.001), and coronary bypass surgery (3 percent vs. 14 percent, P < 0.001). At one year 24 percent of the Canadian and 53 percent of the U.S. patients had undergone angioplasty or bypass surgery at least once (P < 0.001). The Canadian had more visits to physicians during the follow-up year (P < 0.001), but fewer visits to specialists (P < 0.001). At 30 days, functional status was equivalent in the patients from the two countries. However, after one year the U.S. patients had substantially more improvement than the Canadian patients (P < 0.001). The prevalence of chest pain and dyspnea at one year was higher among the Canadian patients (34 percent vs. 21 percent and 45 percent vs. 29 percent, respectively; P < 0.001).
The Canadian patients had more cardiac symptoms and worse functional status one year after acute myocardial infarction than the U.S. patients. The Canadian patients also underwent fewer invasive cardiac procedures and had fewer visits to specialist physicians. These results suggest, but do not prove, that the more aggressive pattern of care in the United States may have been responsible for the better quality of life.
New England Journal of Medicine 10/1994; 331(17):1130-5. · 53.30 Impact Factor