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Aim: To determine the absolute risk reduction (ARR) of heart failure events in people treated with sodium-glucose co-transporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. Materials and Methods: We searched PubMed, EMBASE, CINAHL and ISI Web of Science for observational studies published to 9 May 2022 that explored the association between SGLT2 inhibitors and any indication for heart failure (including new diagnosis or hospitalization for heart failure) in type 2 diabetes. Identified studies were independently screened by two reviewers and assessed for bias using the Newcastle-Ottawa scale. Eligible studies with comparable outcome data were pooled for meta-analysis using random-effects models, reporting hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). The ARR per 100 person-years was determined overall, and in subgroups with and without baseline cardiovascular disease (CVD). Results: From 43 eligible studies, with a total of 4 818 242 participants from 17 countries, 21 were included for meta-analysis. SGLT2 inhibitors were associated with a reduced risk of hospitalization for heart failure (HR 0.65, 95% CI 0.59-0.72) overall and both in those with CVD (HR 0.78, 95% CI 0.68-0.89) and without CVD (HR 0.53, 95% CI 0.39-0.71). Risk reduction for hospitalization for heart failure in people with a history of CVD (ARR 1.17, 95% CI 0.78-1.55) was significantly greater than for those without CVD (ARR 0.39, 95% CI 0.32-0.47). The number-needed-to-treat to prevent one event of hospitalization for heart failure was 86 (95% CI 65-128) person-years of treatment for the CVD group and 256 (95% CI 215-316) person-years for those without CVD. Conclusions: Real-world SGLT2 inhibitor use supports randomized trial data for the size effect of reduced hospitalization for heart failure in type 2 diabetes, although with a much lower ARR in people without CVD.

Original publication




Journal article


Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism

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