Up to 4.5 years’ life gained with SGLT2 inhibition in EMPA REG
medwireNews: The protective effect of empagliflozin against cardiovascular and all-cause mortality translates into between 1.0 and 4.5 years of additional life expectancy for high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes, say the EMPA REG OUTCOME investigators.
The size of the gain depended on the age of the patient, with the largest benefits seen in the youngest patients, report Brian Claggett (Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA) and co-researchers in Circulation.
There were a total of 7020 patients in the trial, taking empagliflozin 10 or 25 mg, or placebo. Among patients aged 45 years, the estimated average survival was 32.1 years for those taking empagliflozin versus 27.6 years for those taking placebo, equating to a significant 4.5-year difference in favor of the sodium-glucose cotransporter (SGLT)-2 inhibitor.
The life gained was a smaller 3.1 years for those aged 50 years, and 2.5, 2.0, and 1.0 years at the ages of 60, 70, and 80 years, respectively, with the last being nonsignificant. The relative benefit of empagliflozin remained constant at all ages, the researchers note – only the absolute benefits diminished with increasing age, because of the declining overall life expectancy.
But they add that complete adherence to the medication would be expected to further enhance its positive effect on life expectancy.
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