The effectiveness of nifedipine in treating angina pectoris at rest was evaluated in 14 patients with frequent ischemic episodes associated with S-T segment elevation or depression. The trial consisted of (1) a 48 hour control period; (2) a placebo period and a period of treatment with nifedipine of 48 hours each; and (3) a second placebo period and a second period of treatment with nifedipine of 24 hours each. The efficacy of treatment was evaluated by continuous electrocardiographic recording to detect painless ischemic episodes. During coronary angiography coronary spasm was demonstrated in five patients. The ergonovine maleate test was positive in seven of eight patients. No statistically significant difference was found in the mean daily number of ischemic episodes between the control period and the first placebo period, or between the control and the second placebo periods. Nifedipine produced a highly significant reduction in the mean daily number of episodes compared with the response to placebo during the first as well as the second period. Nifedipine is effective in angina at rest caused by coronary arterial spasm. The prevention of ischemia may be related to the ability of nifedipine to decrease calcium-dependent coronary muscle tone and to prevent coronary spasm.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine