Sweet relief: diabetes drug could help millions of heart failure patients

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Heart failure affects more than 64 million people worldwide. Half of these people have what’s called ‘mildly reduced or preserved ejection fraction.’

That’s a fancy way of saying their hearts don’t pump blood as well as they should.

A Medicinal Mystery Solved

Scientists from Brigham and Women’s Hospital had an idea. They knew a type 2 diabetes drug called dapagliflozin had helped heart failure patients before.

So, they wondered: Could this drug also help those millions of people whose hearts have mildly reduced or preserved ejection fraction?

There haven’t been many treatment options for these patients. So, the researchers set out to see if dapagliflozin could be the answer.

Across the Heart Spectrum

In their study, the scientists found something incredible. Dapagliflozin, a drug called an SGLT2 inhibitor, helped patients across the whole range of heart failure. It didn’t matter how well their heart was pumping, dapagliflozin could still help.

The drug seemed to reduce heart disease deaths and hospitalizations. And it seemed to make patients feel better and live longer.

A Sweet Solution

Dapagliflozin has a pretty cool job. It helps the body get rid of sugar through pee. This is great for controlling blood sugar in diabetes patients. But, as it turns out, it also seems to help the heart and kidneys.

The Road Ahead

Of course, the study had some limits. And we still have a lot to learn. But these early results are promising. Scientists hope to keep testing treatments like this. Their goal is to help patients live longer, healthier lives.

This study, led by Scott Solomon, was published in the New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet.

It’s a step forward in our understanding of how to treat heart failure. And it brings a glimmer of hope to millions of people worldwide.

If you care about diabetes, please read studies that not all whole grain foods could benefit people with diabetes, and honey could help control blood sugar.

For more information about health, please see recent studies that blueberries strongly benefit people with metabolic syndrome, and results showing vitamin D could improve blood pressure in people with diabetes.

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