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Heart rate increases in liraglutide treated chronic heart failure patients: association with clinical parameters and adverse events: Liraglutide increases heart rate only in chronic heart failure patients with sinus rhythm and independently of beta-blocker dose

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Background. Liraglutide, a glucagon-like peptide-1 agonist, is used for treatment of type 2 diabetes and has beneficial cardiovascular properties. However, treatment increases heart rate (HR) and possibly the risk of cardiovascular events in chronic heart failure (CHF) patients. We investigated potential associations between HR changes and clinical, laboratory and echocardiographic parameters and clinical events in liraglutide treated CHF patients. Methods. This was a sub-study of the LIVE study. CHF patients (N = 241) with a left ventricular ejection fraction ≤45% were randomised to 1.8 mg liraglutide daily or placebo for 24 weeks. Electrocardiograms (N = 117) and readouts from cardiac implanted electronic devices (N = 20) were analysed for HR and arrhythmias. Results. In patients with sinus rhythm (SR), liraglutide increased HR by 8 ± 9 bpm (pulse measurements), 9 ± 9 bpm (ECG measurements) and 9 ± 6 bpm (device readouts) versus placebo (all p'.005). Increases in HR correlated with liraglutide dose (p=.01). HR remained unchanged in patients without SR. Serious cardiac adverse events were not associated with HR changes. Conclusions. During 6 months of treatment, HR increased substantially in CHF patients with SR treated with liraglutide but was not associated with adverse events. The long-term clinical significance of increased HR in liraglutide treated CHF patients needs to be determined.

Original languageEnglish
JournalScandinavian cardiovascular journal : SCJ
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)294-299
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020

    Research areas

  • Type 2 diabetes, arrhythmias, cardiovascular events, heart failure, incretin hormones

ID: 59671775