DOCTOR'S VIEW ARCHIVE

Heart Failure ... Old Drug, New Therapy

The New England Journal of Medicine removed the embargo on an unpublished article (1999) and accompanying editorial about the clinical implications of an advance in the treatment of heart failure. The advance involves a drug called spironolactone (pronounced spi-ro-no-lac-tone) that has been manufactured by G.D. Searle & Co. for some years under the brand name of Aldactone and is available as a generic drug. The news about spironolactone is twofold:

  1. Spironolactactone is a major help in treating congestive heart failure; and very importantly
  2. Its beneficial effects are additive to those from ACE inhibitors, another class of drugs commonly relied on in treating heart failure.

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