Double-blind placebo-controlled trial of aprindine and digoxin for the prevention of symptomatic atrial fibrillation.
Author(s): Atarashi H, Inoue H, Fukunami M, Sugi K, Hamada C, Origasa H, Sinus Rhythm Maintenance in Atrial Fibrillation Randomized Trial (SMART) Investigators
Affiliation(s): First Department of Internal Medicine, Nippon Medical School, Tama-City, Tokyo, Japan.
Publication date & source: 2002-06, Circ J., 66(6):553-6.
Publication type: Clinical Trial; Multicenter Study; Randomized Controlled Trial
A multicenter, placebo-controlled, randomized, double-blind trial compared the preventive effect of aprindine and digoxin on the recurrence of atrial fibrillation (AF) with placebo, and also compare the effectiveness of these 2 drugs in the prevention of AF. Patients with symptomatic paroxysmal or persistent AF who had converted to sinus rhythm (SR) were randomly assigned aprindine (40 mg/day), digoxin (0.25 mg/day) or placebo and followed up on an outpatient basis every 2 weeks for 6 months. Of the 141 patients from 36 participating centers, 47 were given aprindine, 47 digoxin, and 47 were on placebo. After the 6-month follow-up, the Kaplan-Meier estimates of the percentage of patients remaining free of recurrent symptomatic AF on aprindine, digoxin and placebo were 33.3%, 29.2% and 21.5%, respectively. In patients remaining in SR for 15 days after from the start of follow-up, freedom from recurrence was significantly more prevalent in the aprindine group than in the placebo group (p=0.0414), but there was no significant difference between the digoxin and placebo groups. The rate of adverse events was similar in the 3 groups. In conclusion, neither aprindine nor digoxin had a significant effect on preventing relapse of symptomatic AF; however, recurrence of AF occurred later with aprindine than with placebo or digoxin.