Objectives: This study was designed to evaluate the use of antiarrhythmic drugs and anticoagulants in elder hospitalized patients with both atrial fibrillation (AF) and congestive heart failure (CHF).Methods: The hospital records of 140 patients with a diagnosis of CHF and AF were reviewed. Comparison of antiarrhythmic drugs and anticoagulants was made between patients who had continuous AF (rate control group) and sinus rhythm (rhythm control group).Results: 92 patients (45 males, mean age 77.4 ± 9.2 years) were in rate control and 48 (29 males, mean age 76.3 ± 12.4) were in the rhythm control group. The most commonly used antiarrhythmic drugs were digoxin (54.3% in rate control and 29.2% in rhythm control group, P<0.01). The use of amiodarone in the rate control group was lower than in the rhythm control group (7.9% vs 39.6%, P<0.01). There was no significant difference in the use of beta-blockers (28.3% vs 39.2%), verapamil or diltiazem (9.8% vs 6.3%) or sotalol (2.2% vs 8.3%) between the two groups (P>0.05). Of the 110 patients who were eligible for anticoagulation therapy, 64 (58.2%) were prescribed with warfarin at discharge. Eligible patients not receiving oral warfarin were older than those who did (79.7 ± 9.0 vs 75.8 ± 9.0, P<0.05).Conclusion: In the elderly hospitalized patients with AF and CHF, digoxin, beta-blockers and amiodarone were the main antiarrhythmic drugs. Anticoagulation therapy in these patients is significantly underused and the reasons for this require further investigation.
|Number of pages||11|
|Journal||Current Therapeutic Research - Clinical and Experimental|
|Publication status||Published - 2008|