Gout sufferers with major pre-existing heart disease face a higher risk of death if they are treated with the drug febuxostat, a large long-term study has concluded
The risk of death from cardiovascular disease was 34 percent higher with febuxostat than with an older drug, allopurinol. When researchers considered deaths from any cause, the risk was 22 percent higher with febuxostat.
“The results are entirely unexpected and we don’t have a mechanistic explanation for them,” chief author Dr. William White of the University of Connecticut School of Medicine told Reuters Health in an email.
The new study, known as CARES, was presented Monday at an annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology in Orlando. The study also found that the rates of major cardiovascular events, such as a non-fatal heart attack, stroke, rhythm problems and hospitalization for heart failure, were comparable for the two drugs.
The full study has been published online by the New England Journal of Medicine.
MARCH 12, 2018