New drug ranolazine is a safe and effective treatment for chronic stable angina and adds to the treatment options for patients with this condition.
Heart disease continues to be the largest cause of death in the US, where 9.1 million people have the condition, some three percent of the population. For every patient admitted to hospital with a heart attack, there are 30 angina patients.
There are a wide variety of angina treatments including Beta blockers, statins, aspirin, and diet and exercise. Ranolozine was patented in 1986, and then approved for use in the US in 2006 for angina patients who remain symptomatic despite being on one or more of the standard treatments.
Ranolazine has been assessed in randomised controlled trials and extended the time patients could exercise before an angina attack developed. It also reduced anginal episodes by a mean of one attack per week, according to Eurekalert. These findings were published in this week’s edition of The Lancet.
Men showed more of an exercise benefit than women given the drug, this despite a higher prevalence of angina in women than men. Side-effects of the drug can be nausea, constipation, and dizziness.
The authors concluded: "Ranolazine seems to be a safe addition to current traditional drugs for chronic stable angina, especially in aggressive multi-drug regimens."