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Sodium glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors and risk of major adverse cardiovascular events: multi-database retrospective cohort study


Objective — To compare the risk of cardiovascular events between sodium glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors and dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors among people with type 2 diabetes in a real world context of clinical practice.

Design — Multi-database retrospective cohort study using a prevalent new user design with subsequent meta-analysis.

Setting — Canadian Network for Observational Drug Effect Studies (CNODES), with administrative healthcare databases from seven Canadian provinces and the United Kingdom, 2013-18.

Population — 209 867 new users of a SGLT2 inhibitor matched to 209 867 users of a DPP-4 inhibitor on time conditional propensity score and followed for a mean of 0.9 years.

Main Outcome Measures — The primary outcome was major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE, a composite of myocardial infarction, ischaemic stroke, or cardiovascular death). Secondary outcomes were the individual components of MACE, heart failure, and all cause mortality. Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate site specific adjusted hazards ratios and 95% confidence intervals, comparing use of SGLT2 inhibitors with use of DPP-4 inhibitors in an as treated approach. Site specific results were pooled using random effects meta-analysis.

Results — Compared with DPP-4 inhibitors, SGLT2 inhibitors were associated with decreased risks of MACE (incidence rate per 1000 person years: 11.4 v 16.5; hazard ratio 0.76, 95% confidence interval 0.69 to 0.84), myocardial infarction (5.1 v 6.4; 0.82, 0.70 to 0.96), cardiovascular death (3.9 v 7.7; 0.60, 0.54 to 0.67), heart failure (3.1 v 7.7; 0.43, 0.37 to 0.51), and all cause mortality (8.7 v 17.3; 0.60, 0.54 to 0.67). SGLT2 inhibitors had more modest benefits for ischaemic stroke (2.6 v 3.5; 0.85, 0.72 to 1.01). Similar benefits for MACE were observed with canagliflozin (0.79, 0.66 to 0.94), dapagliflozin (0.73, 0.63 to 0.85), and empagliflozin (0.77, 0.68 to 0.87).

Conclusions — In this large observational study conducted in a real world clinical practice context, the short term use of SGLT2 inhibitors was associated with a decreased risk of cardiovascular events compared with the use of DPP-4 inhibitors.



Filion KB, Lix LM, Yu OH, Dell’Aniello S, Douros A, Shah BR, St-Jean A, Fisher A, Tremblay E, Bugden SC, Alessi-Severini S, Ronksley PE, Hu N, Dormuth CR, Ernst P, Suissa S; Canadian Network for Observational Drug Effect Studies (CNODES) Investigators. BMJ. 2020; 370:m3342. Epub 2020 Sep 23.

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