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עמוד בית
Fri, 24.05.24

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November 2022
Yehonatan Sherf MD MPH, Dekel Avital MD, Shahar Geva Robinson MD, Natan Arotsker MD, Liat Waldman Radinsky MD, Efrat Chen Hendel MD MPH, Dana Braiman MD, Ahab Hayadri MD, Dikla Akselrod MD, Tal Schlaeffer-Yosef MD, Yasmeen Abu Fraiha MD, Ronen Toledano MD, Nimrod Maimon MD MHA

Background: Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most prevalent cardiac arrhythmia. Previous studies showed that rhythm and rate control strategies are associated with similar rates of mortality and serious morbidity. Beta blockers (BB) and calcium channel blockers (CCB) are commonly used and the selection between these two medications depends on personal preference.

Objectives: To compare real-time capability of BB and CCB for the treatment of rapid AF and to estimate their efficacy in reducing hospitalization duration.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 306 patients hospitalized at Soroka Hospital during a 5-year period with new onset AF who were treated by a rate control strategy.

Results: A significant difference between the two groups regarding the time (in hours) until reaching a target heart rate below 100 beats/min was observed. BB were found to decrease the heart rate after 5 hours (range 4–14) vs. 8 hours (range 4–18) for CCB (P = 0.009). Patients diagnosed with new-onset AF exhibited shorter duration of hospitalization after therapy with BB compared to CCB (median 72 vs. 96 hours, P = 0.012) in the subgroup of patients discharged with persistent AF. There was no significant difference between CCB and BB regarding the duration of hospitalization (P = 0.4) in the total patient population.

Conclusions: BB therapy is more potent for rapid reduction of the heart rate compared to CCB and demonstrated better efficiency in shortening the duration of hospitalization in a subgroup of patients. This finding should be reevaluated in subsequent research.

November 2019
Ram Mazkereth MD, Ayala Maayan-Metzger MD, Leah Leibovitch MD, Irit Schushan-Eisen MD, Iris Morag MD and Tzipora Straus MD M.Sc

Background: The need for postnatal monitoring of infants exposed to intrauterine beta blockers (BBs) has not been clearly defined.

Objectives: To evaluate infants exposed to intrauterine BBs in order to estimate the need for postnatal monitoring.

Methods: This retrospective case-control study comprised 153 term infants born to mothers who had been treated with BBs during pregnancy. Treatment indications included hypertension 76 mothers (49.7%), cardiac arrhythmias 48 (31.4%), rheumatic heart disease 14 (9.1%), cardiomyopathy 11 (7.2%) and migraine 4 (2.6%). The controls were infants of mothers with hypertension not exposed to BBs who were born at the same gestational age and born closest (before or after) to the matched infant in the study group.

Results: Compared to the control group, the infants in the study group had a higher prevalence of early asymptomatic hypoglycemia (study 30.7% vs. control 18.3%, P = 0.016), short symptomatic bradycardia events, other cardiac manifestations (P = 0.016), and longer hospitalization (P < 0.001). No life-threatening medical conditions were documented. The birth weight was significantly lower for the high-dose subgroup compared to the low-dose subgroup (P = 0.03), and the high-dose subgroup had a higher incidence of small-for-gestational-age (P = 0.02).

Conclusions: No alarming or life-threatening medical conditions were observed among term infants born to BB treated mothers. These infants can be safely observed for 48 hours after birth close to their mothers in the maternity ward. Glucose follow-up is needed, especially in the first hours of life.


March 2012
B. Zafrir and O. Amir

Beta blockers are a fundamental treatment in chronic heart failure (HF), yet concern and disagreement regarding their role in the treatment of decompensated HF and during hospitalization are common in clinical practice. This review summarizes the literature on various aspects of beta blocker treatment during acute and chronic decompensated HF. In recent years evidence has accumulated concerning the efficacy and tolerability of beta blockers in decompensated HF. Clinical analyses show that withdrawal of chronic beta blockade should be avoided when possible during hospitalization and that beta blocker therapy be initiated as soon as hemodynamic stability and a euvolemic state are achieved. This strategy may increase adherence to beta blockers after discharge and lower rehospitalization and mortality rates. We also discuss the various positive inotrope regimens (phosphodiesterase inhibitors, levosimendan, dobutamine) and their interactions with beta blockers in decompensated HF.

December 2006
A. Jotkowitz, A. Porath, A. Shotan, M. Mittelman, E. Grossman, R. Zimlichman, B.S. Lewis, A. Caspi, S. Gottlieb and M. Garty, for the Steering Committee of the Israeli Heart Failure National Survey 2003

Background: Despite significant advances in the therapy of heart failure, many patients still do not receive optimal treatment.

Objectives: To document the standard of care that patients hospitalized with HF[1] in Israel received during a 2 month period.

Methods: The Heart Failure Survey in Israel 2003 was a prospective 2 month survey of patients admitted to all 25 public hospitals in Israel with a diagnosis of HF.

Results: The mean age of the 4102 patients was 73 years and 43% were female. The use of angiotensin-converting enzyme/angiotensin receptor blockers and beta blockers both declined from NYHA class I to IV (68.8% to 50.6% for ACE[2]-inhibitor/ARB[3] and 64.1% to 52.9% for beta blockers, P < 0.001 for comparisons). The percentage of patients by NYHA class taking an ACE-inhibitor or ARB and a beta blocker at hospital discharge also declined from NYHA class I to IV (47.5% to 28.8%, P < 0.002 for comparisons). The strongest predictor of being discharged with an ACE-inhibitor or ARB was the use of these medications at hospital admission. Negative predictors for their usage were age, creatinine, disease severity class, and functional status.

Conclusions: Despite the dissemination of guidelines many patients did not receive optimal care for HF. Reasons for this discrepancy need to be identified and modified.

[1] HF = heart failure

[2] ACE = angiotensin-converting enzyme

[3] ARB = angiotensin receptor blocker

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