Lack of relationship between the short-term hemodynamic effects of captopril and subsequent clinical responses.
The role of hemodynamic monitoring during the initiation of vasodilator therapy for heart failure remains to be defined, despite the tremendous potential socioeconomic and clinical ramifications. We therefore performed resting and exercise hemodynamic studies before and during the initial 48 hr of captopril therapy in 14 stable patients with New York Heart Association Class II or III chronic congestive heart failure. Their clinical response to therapy was determined by evaluating changes in clinical status and the measured changes in exercise tolerance, heart size, and ejection fraction after 3 months. Significant improvement in each of these indexes was found for the group as a whole, but the baseline hemodynamics and the hemodynamic responses to captopril differed little between the patients showing marked improvement and those exhibiting little or no change. Correlations between the hemodynamic measurements and the changes in clinical class, exercise tolerance, heart size, and ejection fraction were generally poor. Even when they achieved significance, these correlations were too loose to allow prediction of the clinical efficacy of captopril in individual subjects. These findings indicate that the routine use of invasive hemodynamic monitoring during the initiation of captopril is unnecessary and potentially misleading, although such measurements remain valuable for diagnosis, the management of patients with complex conditions, and for investigation. The response to captopril may be best evaluated by serial measurements of exercise tolerance and heart size in addition to clinical assessment.
- Copyright © 1984 by American Heart Association