Daily Mail

Diabetes drug could cut heart failure deaths

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A DIABETES drug could transform the treatment of heart failure and cut deaths by more than a fifth, doctors revealed yesterday.

Half of heart failure patients have ‘reduced ejection fraction’, where the heart is unable to pump blood round the body due to a mechanical issue. And half have ‘preserved ejection fraction’, where the heart pumps blood well but cannot provide oxygen to all the parts of the body.

It was already known that drugs named SGLT2 inhibitors, which are used to treat diabetes, could aid patients with reduced ejection fraction.

But now researcher­s from the University of East Anglia have found the same drugs can also be used effectivel­y to treat preserved ejection fraction.

Professor Vass Vassiliou, who led the study, said: ‘Preserved ejection fraction had puzzled doctors, as every medicine tested showed no benefit.

‘This is the first medication that can really improve the outcomes for this group and it will revolution­ise the treatment offered to heart failure patients.’

The UEA research team hopes the drugs watchdog, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, will consider the findings and approve SGLT2 inhibitors for NHS use in patients with preserved ejection fraction.

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