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Circulation Journal
Vol. 70 (2006) No. 4 p. 376-383



Clinical Investigation

Background Because of their favorable prognostic effects, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI), angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARB) and β blockers have become background therapy in dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). However, there are few reports concerning the long-term prognosis of Japanese patients with DCM in relation to these treatments. Methods and Results One hundred and fifty patients with DCM were divided into 2 groups: group A (n=46) (diagnosis: 1982-1989) and group B (n=104) (diagnosis: 1990-2002). During follow-up period of 6.9±4.8 years, 62 patients died and 1 patient had a heart transplant. The survival rate at 5 and 10 years was 60.9% and 34.8%, respectively, in group A patients, and 80.9% and 65.3%, respectively, in group B patients (p=0.0079). In group A patients, ACEI/ARB or β blockers were less frequently used (p<0.0001), whereas antiarrhythmics (class Ia or Ib) were more often used (p<0.0001). The patients treated with ACEI/ARB and β blockers showed a better survival rate than those without (p<0.0001). The patients with antiarrhythmics showed a worse survival rate than those without (p<0.0001). Conclusion The prognosis of Japanese patients with DCM has significantly improved over the past 20 years. This improvement may be explained partly through the increased use of ACEI/ARB and β blockers and a declining use of antiarrhythmics. (Circ J 2006; 70: 376 - 383)


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