Objective To study long-term treatment effects of metoprolol or verapamil on combined cardiovascular end points and psychological variables in patients with stable angina pectoris. Design Randomized, double-blind, double-dummy trial. Patients The study included 809 patients under 70 years of age with stable angina pectoris. The mean age of the patients was 59 +/- 7 years and 31% were women. Exclusion criteria were myocardial infarction within the previous 3 years and contraindications to beta-blockers and calcium antagonists. The patients were followed between 6 and 75 months (median 3.4 years and a total of 2887 patient years). Intervention The patients were treated with either metoprolol (Seloken ZOC 200 mg o.d.) or verapamil (Isoptin Retard 240 b.i.d.). Acetylsalicylic acid, ACE inhibitors, lipid lowering drugs and long acting nitrates were allowed in the study. End points Death, non-fatal cardiovascular events including acute myocardial infarction, incapacitating or unstable angina, cerebrovascular or peripheral vascular events. Psychological variables reflecting quality of life i.e. psychosomatic symptoms, sleep disturbances and an evaluation of overall life satisfaction. Results Combined cardiovascular events did not differ and occurred in 30.8% and 29.3% of metoprolol and verapamil treated patients respectively. Total mortality in metoprolol and verapamil treated patients was 5.4 and 6.2%, respectively. Cardiovascular mortality was 4.7% in both groups. Non-fatal cardiovascular events occurred in 26.1 and 24.3% of metoprolol and verapamil-treated patients, respectively. Psychosomatic symptoms and sleep disturbances were significantly improved in both treatment groups. The magnitudes of change were small and did not differ between treatments. Life satisfaction did not change on either drug. Withdrawals due to side effects occurred in 11.1 and 14.6%, respectively. Conclusion This long term study indicates that both drugs are well tolerated and that no difference was shown on the effect on mortality, cardiovascular end points and measures of quality of life.
1996. Vol. 17, no 1, 76-81 p.