Cardiovascular safety of beta(2)-adrenoceptor agonist use in patients with obstructive airway disease: a systematic review

Drugs & Aging
Shelley R Salpeter


beta(2)-Adrenoceptor agonists have been used as bronchodilators in the management of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD); however, there is evidence suggesting that beta(2)-adrenoceptor agonist use may increase morbidity and mortality. A systematic review of case-control studies and randomised controlled trials was performed to evaluate the cardiovascular safety of beta(2)-adrenoceptor agonist use in patients with obstructive airway disease, defined as asthma or COPD. Case-control studies have shown that beta(2)-adrenoceptor agonist use is associated with an increased risk of myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrest and sudden cardiac death. The degree of risk appears to be dose-dependent, and may be highest for new users and those with concomitant cardiac conditions. Pooled data from randomised placebo-controlled trials indicate that beta(2)-adrenoceptor agonist use increases the risk of adverse cardiovascular events by more than 2-fold compared with placebo, thus providing evidence that the association seen in case-control studies is a causal one. Single doses of beta(2)-adrenoceptor agonists significantly increase heart rate and decrease potassium concentrations compared with placeb...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Adrenergic beta-Agonists
Cardiovascular Diseases
Nested Case-Control Studies
Controlled Clinical Trials, Randomized
Chronic Airflow Obstruction
Adrenergic alpha-2 Receptor Agonists

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