Dr Milton Packer Highlights Renal Outcomes of EMPEROR Reduced

September 5, 2020

In the past 30 years, we've never seen a heart failure drug that has had such a beneficial effect on the kidneys, said Milton Packer, MD, a distinguished scholar in cardiovascular science at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, and chair of the department of clinical sciences at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School.

In the past 30 years, we've never seen a heart failure drug that has had such a beneficial effect on the kidneys, said Milton Packer, MD, a distinguished scholar in cardiovascular science at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, and chair of the department of clinical sciences at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School.

Transcript:

The American Journal of Managed Care® (AJMC®): Can you discuss the importance of renal outcomes observed in EMPEROR Reduced trial evaluating empagliflozin?

Packer: The renal outcomes in EMPEROR Reduced are very striking. We not only saw a reduction, a slowing of the slope of decline of glomerular filtration rate over time, but we found a 50% reduction in the risk of serious renal outcomes with the drug. We've never seen a drug for heart failure over the past 30 years that has ever had such a beneficial effect on the kidneys. Having a beneficial effect on the kidneys in people with heart failure is really important because it's often renal function that limits the efficacy of drugs that we use for the treatment of heart failure. So having a drug that favorably affects the heart and kidneys simultaneously, is very significant.

AJMC®: The paper mentions that a few patients were lost to follow up due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Can you explain what this means exactly, and whether you're concerned COVID-19 will have an effect on the results of EMPEROR preserved as that study is not due until next spring?

Packer: Well COVID-19 is making things challenging for all clinical trials. All clinical trialists now are facing challenges about how to maintain the integrity of trials. There's challenges with respect to recruitment, with the delivery of study medication, with the fidelity of follow up. These are challenges that we need to overcome because we still need to do to clinical trials, they're still so critical in informing our database. We were very fortunate in EMPEROR Reduced that the pandemic struck just at the very end of the completion of the trial. So the impact on EMPEROR Reduced was pretty minimal.