Objectives: The purpose of this study was to compare the efficacy of beta-blockers in congenital long QT syndrome (LQTS). Background: Beta-blockers are the mainstay in managing LQTS. Studies comparing the efficacy of commonly used beta-blockers are lacking, and clinicians generally assume they are equally effective. Methods: Electrocardiographic and clinical parameters of 382 LQT1/LQT2 patients initiated on propranolol (n = 134), metoprolol (n = 147), and nadolol (n = 101) were analyzed, excluding patients 480 ms. None of the asymptomatic patients had BCEs. Among symptomatic patients (n = 101), 15 had BCEs (all syncopes). The QTc shortening was significantly less pronounced among patients with BCEs. There was a greater risk of BCEs for symptomatic patients initiated on metoprolol compared to users of the other 2 beta-blockers combined, after adjustment for genotype (odds ratio: 3.95, 95% confidence interval: 1.2 to 13.1, p = 0.025). Kaplan-Meier analysis showed a significantly lower event-free survival for symptomatic patients receiving metoprolol compared to propranolol/nadolol. Conclusions: Propranolol has a significantly better QTc shortening effect compared to metoprolol and nadolol, especially in patients with prolonged QTc. Propranolol and nadolol are equally effective, whereas symptomatic patients started on metoprolol are at a significantly higher risk for BCEs. Metoprolol should not be used for symptomatic LQT1 and LQT2 patients.
- breakthrough cardiac events
- congenital long QT syndrome
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine