• Article

Variation in cardiovascular risk related to individual antimuscarinic drugs used to treat overactive bladder A cohort study in the UK

BACKGROUND: Blocking muscarinic receptors could have an effect upon cardiac function, especially among elderly patients with overactive bladder (OAB).

STUDY OBJECTIVE: To investigate the risk of cardiovascular events in users of antimuscarinic drugs to treat OAB.

DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Cohort study of new users of darifenacin, fesoterodine, oxybutynin, solifenacin, tolterodine, or trospium, aged ≥18 years old in the United Kingdom's Clinical Practice Research Datalink (CPRD), 2004-2012.

OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Using tolterodine as the reference, we estimated propensity-score-stratified incidence rate ratios (IRRs) for acute myocardial infarction, stroke, cardiovascular mortality, major adverse cardiac events (MACE, a combined endpoint of the previous three), and all-cause death for individual antimuscarinic drugs. The study cohort included 119,912 new users of OAB drugs. The mean age at cohort entry was 62 years, 70% were female, and the mean follow-up was 3.3 years. The adjusted IRR (95% confidence interval) for MACE and current use of oxybutynin compared with current use of tolterodine was 1.14 (1.01-1.30). In contrast, it was 0.65 (0.56-0.76) for current use of solifenacin compared to tolterodine. In this study, performed with health care data, the distribution of risk factors was relatively similar across users of different OAB drugs and, although our analyses controlled for a range of measured potential confounders, residual confounding cannot be ruled out.

CONCLUSIONS: In an observational comparative study of users of medications to treat OAB conducted in routine clinical practice, the risk for cardiovascular side effects was increased in users of oxybutynin and decreased in users of solifenacin compared with users of tolterodine. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.


Arana, A., Margulis, A. V., McQuay, L. J., Ziemiecki, R., Bartsch, J. L., Rothman, K. J., ... Perez-Gutthann, S. (2018). Variation in cardiovascular risk related to individual antimuscarinic drugs used to treat overactive bladder: A cohort study in the UK. Pharmacotherapy. DOI: 10.1002/phar.2121

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