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Vol. 63 (1999) No. 5 P 333-338



Clinical Study

To analyze the recent change in the long-term survival of patients with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), the present study comprised consecutive 111 patients with ejection fraction <50% and left ventricular end-diastolic diameter >58 mm, who were admitted to hospital from January 1983 to December 1994. The patients were divided into 2 groups: group A who were diagnosed before 1989 and group B diagnosed after 1990. Basic characteristics at diagnosis, including age, NYHA functional class, left ventricular end-diastolic diameter and ejection fraction, were similar between these 2 groups. Calculated survival rate at 5 years was 90.0% in group B in contrast to 62.3% in group A. Event-free survival also improved in group B. In group B, β-blockers and angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors were more frequently used than in group A (p<0.0001) whereas digitalis and other positive inotropic agents were significantly less used. Left ventricular ejection fraction was significantly improved during the follow-up period in patients treated with β-blockers compared with those not treated with β-blockers. These data indicate a significant improvement in the survival of patients with dilated cardiomyopathy after 1990, which may be explained by the change of medical treatment, especially the use of β-blockers. (Jpn Circ J 1999; 63: 333 - 338)


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