New heart failure drug extends survival by up to two years

A re-analysis of trial data reveals that the highly effective new drug sacubitril-valsartan could extend life by two years compared with enalapril for cardiovascular patients.

The heart failure drug sacubitril-valsartan reduces rates of cardiovascular death. Recent study shows that the treatment is also associated with a 1-2 year increase in life expectancy. In the image, MRI scan of patient who suffered heart failure

The heart failure drug sacubitril-valsartan significantly reduces rates of cardiovascular death and hospitalisation compared with enalapril, the current standard of care, in patients with reduced ejection fraction.

A new analysis, published in The
New England Journal of Medicine (online, 3 December 2015)[1]
, estimates that treatment with the drug is also associated with a one to two year increase in life expectancy compared with enalapril.

Researchers from the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, re-analysed data on 8,399 patients from the PARADIGM-HF trial. They found a consistent effect on survival across patients aged 45–75 years. For example, a 65-year-old patient could expect to survive 11.4 years on sacubitril-valsartan compared with 10.0 years on enalapril.

The drug has been available since August 2015 on the Medicine and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency’s early access to medicine scheme, and received its EU marketing authorisation in November 2015.


[1] Claggett B, Packer M, Solomon SD et al. Estimating the long-term treatment benefits of sacubitril–valsartan. New England Journal of Medicine 2015;373:23. doi:10.1056/NEJMc1509753

Last updated
Clinical Pharmacist, CP, January 2016, Vol 8, No 1;8(1):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2015.20200226

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