Journal Article
Multicenter Study
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Association of preoperative beta-blocker use and cardiac complications after major noncardiac surgery: a prospective cohort study.

INTRODUCTION: Cardiac complications after major noncardiac surgery are common and associated with high morbidity and mortality. How preoperative use of beta-blockers may impact perioperative cardiac complications remains unclear.

METHODS: In a multicentre prospective cohort study, preoperative beta-blocker use was ascertained in consecutive patients at elevated cardiovascular risk undergoing major noncardiac surgery. Cardiac complications were prospectively monitored and centrally adjudicated by two independent experts. The primary endpoint was perioperative myocardial infarction or injury attributable to a cardiac cause (cardiac PMI) within the first three postoperative days. The secondary endpoints were major adverse cardiac events (MACE), defined as a composite of myocardial infarction, acute heart failure, life-threatening arrhythmia, and cardiovascular death and all-cause death after 365 days. We used inverse probability of treatment weighting to account for differences between patients receiving beta-blockers and those who did not.

RESULTS: A total of 3839/10 272 (37.4%) patients (mean age 74 yr; 44.8% female) received beta-blockers before surgery. Patients on beta-blockers were older, and more likely to be male with established cardiorespiratory and chronic kidney disease. Cardiac PMI occurred in 1077 patients, with a weighted odds ratio of 1.03 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.94-1.12, P=0.55) for patients on beta-blockers. Within 365 days of surgery, 971/10 272 (9.5%) MACE had occurred, with a weighted hazard ratio of 0.99 (95% CI 0.83-1.18, P=0.90) for patients on beta-blockers.

CONCLUSION: Preoperative use of beta-blockers was not associated with decreased cardiac complications including cardiac perioperative myocardial infarction or injury and major adverse cardiac event. Additionally, preoperative use of beta-blockers was not associated with increased all-cause death within 30 and 365 days.


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