Under new draft guidance that was released today by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), nurses may soon be allowed to use ivabradine in order to treat patients that are suffering from chronic heart failure.
NICE recommends that this drug be used in combination with other more routine therapy options such as beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, and aldosterone antagonists. If beta-blocker therapy is not a safe choice than in some cases ivabradine can also be used alone to treat heart failure although it is not proven to be the most effective treatment plan.
Although the draft guidance has not yet been sent over to the NHS, it is available for nurses to take a look at now. Recommendations also state that treatment with ivabradine should not begin until standard therapies have been stabilised and optimised over at least a four week period.
At this point heart failure patients can begin to use the drug in order to improve their overall quality of life and in positive cases sometimes even their life expectancy. It has also been seen in clinical studies that patients on the drug oftentimes are able to avoid future hospitalisation.