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 Hydrocortisone Helps to Prevent AF

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Number of posts : 112
Registration date : 2006-12-09

PostSubject: Hydrocortisone Helps to Prevent AF   Thu Apr 12, 2007 12:16 am

Hydrocortisone Helps to Prevent Atrial Fibrillation After Cardiac Surgery

Intravenous hydrocortisone helps to prevent atrial fibrillation after cardiac surgery, according to a randomized study in today's JAMA.

About 240 patients undergoing cardiac surgery (CABG, aortic valve replacement, or both) were treated postoperatively with metoprolol and either intravenous hydrocortisone or placebo. Intravenous treatment was given on the evening of surgery and once every 8 hours for 3 additional days.

During these 3.5 postoperative days, atrial fibrillation occurred less often in patients receiving hydrocortisone (30%) than in those receiving placebo (48%) -- adjusted HR, 0.54. The number needed to treat was 5.6. In a meta-analysis that combined data from this study with two similar studies, the researchers found a similar reduction in risk for atrial fibrillation associated with hydrocortisone treatment.

The authors caution, however, that the study was underpowered to assess hydrocortisone's safety, and that patients undergoing mitral valve surgery were excluded from the study.
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