Illicit Stimulant Use in a United States Heart Failure Population Presenting to the Emergency Department (from the Acute Decompensated Heart Failure National Registry Emergency Module)

Published:September 09, 2008DOI:
      Illicit stimulant drug use may have a profound clinical impact in acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF). The chronic use of cocaine and methamphetamine may lead to overt cardiomyopathy and ADHF. The Acute Decompensated Heart Failure National Registry Emergency Module (ADHERE-EM) collected data on patients presenting to emergency departments with ADHF at 83 geographically dispersed hospitals in the United States. This registry was queried to determine the rate of self-reported illicit drug use in emergency department patients presenting with ADHF and compare these patients with those without illicit drug use. The registry enrolled 11,258 patients with ADHF with drug use data from January 2004 to March 2006. Of these patients, 594 (5.3%) self-reported current or past stimulant drug use. Compared with nonusers, these patients were more likely to be younger (median age 49.7 vs 76.1 years), to be African American (odds ratio 11.9, 95% confidence interval 9.8 to 14.4), and to have left ventricular ejection fractions <40% (odds ratio 3.4, 95% confidence interval 2.8 to 4.2). Admitted users had no difference in mortality (adjusted odds ratio 0.83, 95% confidence interval 0.25 to 2.72) compared with nonusers. In conclusion, data from ADHERE-EM suggest that a clinically important percentage of patients with ADHF report the use of illicit stimulant drugs. Although these patients are younger with a greater degree of LV dysfunction, they did not have greater risk-adjusted mortality.
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