Calcium channel blocker use and outcomes in patients with heart failure and mildly reduced and preserved ejection fraction

Shingo Matsumoto, Toru Kondo, Mingming Yang, Ross T. Campbell, Kieran F. Docherty, Rudolf A. de Boer, Akshay S. Desai, Carolyn S.P. Lam, Milton Packer, Bertram Pitt, Jean L. Rouleau, Muthiah Vaduganathan, Faiez Zannad, Michael R. Zile, Scott D. Solomon, Pardeep S. Jhund, John J.V. McMurray*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Patients with heart failure (HF) and mildly reduced ejection fraction (HFmrEF) and preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) are often treated with calcium channel blockers (CCBs), although the safety of CCBs in these patients is uncertain. We aimed to investigate the association between CCB use and clinical outcomes in patients with HFmrEF/HFpEF; CCBs were examined overall, as well as by subtype (dihydropyridine and non-dihydropyridine). 

Methods and results: 

We pooled individual patient data from four large HFpEF/HFmrEF trials. The association between CCB use and outcomes was assessed. Among the 16 954 patients included, the mean left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was 56.8%, and 13 402 (79.0%) had HFpEF (LVEF ≥50%). Altogether, 5874 patients (34.6%) received a CCB (87.6% dihydropyridines). Overall, the risks of death and HF hospitalization were not higher in patients treated with a CCB, particularly dihydropyridines. The risk of pump failure death was significantly lower (hazard ratio [HR] 0.76, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.60–0.96), while the risk of stroke was higher (HR 1.26, 95% CI 1.06–1.50) in patients treated with a CCB compared to those not. These risks remained different in patients treated and not treated with a CCB after adjustment for other prognostic variables. Although the majority of patients were treated with dihydropyridine CCBs, the pattern of outcomes was broadly similar for both dihydropyridine and non-dihydropyridine CCBs. 


Although this is an observational analysis of non-randomized treatment, there was no suggestion that CCBs were associated with worse HF outcomes. Indeed, CCB use was associated with a lower incidence of pump failure death.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2202-2214
Number of pages13
JournalEuropean Journal of Heart Failure
Issue number12
Early online date28 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 European Society of Cardiology.


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