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Top Drugs: Systolic Heart Failure

A resource guide for the top systolic heart failure drugs.

Heart failure is a clinical syndrome associated with symptoms of fatigue and shortness of breath and signs of edema. Systolic heart failure is associated with left ventricular dysfunction and an ejection fraction less than 40%. Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE-inhibitors) and beta-blockers are the standard treatment approach in systolic heart failure. Most patients will also take loop diuretics to control edema symptoms. The next line of drug therapy options are used when patients have persistent symptoms. These include nitrates in combination with hydralazine, aldosterone antagonists and digoxin. In patients who are unable to tolerate ACE inhibitors due to side effects, the alternatives are angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) and nitrates in combination with hydralazine. An example of nitrates are isosorbide mononitrate and dinitrate.

Note: Refer to complete prescribing information for information on use in these special populations: children, pregnancy, lactation, elderly, liver disease and kidney disease. 

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