ESC Congress 2004: Antibiotic treatment for secondary prevention of coronary events


Results of the Azithromycin and Coronary Events Study (ACES)

Results of large-scale clinical trial of antibiotic treatment to reduce heart attacks

ACES study did not reduce coronary heart disease events

Results presented during a Hot Line session at the European Society Cardiology meeting here today showed that weekly treatment for one year with azithromycin did not result in any reduction in the incidence of cardiovascular events when compared to placebo.

The Azithromycin and Coronary Events Study (ACES) enrolled 4012 participants at 28 clinical centres in the United States. Participants received either placebo or azithromycin 600mg once weekly for one year and were followed for four years. Antibiotic treatment was directed at a bacteria known as Chlamydia pneumoniae which has been found in the coronary arteries of patients with coronary heart disease (CHD).

What does the negative findings in the ACES study tell us about the Association of C. pneumoniae and heart disease? It does suggest that neither C. pneumoniae nor other bacteria susceptible to azithromycin plays an important role in the late stage disease 7of CHD. However "the trial results do not tell us anything about a possible role of C. pneumoniae in the early development or acceleration of CHD" said Dr. J. Thomas Grayston, the Principal Investigator of the ACES trial.

Dr. Grayston is a professor of Epidemiology at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Most importantly says Dr. Grayston, "The study results do not support the use of antibiotic therapy for treatment of coronary heart disease. While not as exciting as positive findings, negative findings can be important. In this case, the findings are important because in the past it was unclear whether antibiotics might have some benefit in patients with coronary heart disease and we now know that such treatment is not helpful".

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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