Perioperative use of levosimendan in patients undergoing cardiac surgery: systematic review and meta-analysis
Patients undergoing cardiac surgery frequently develop low cardiac output syndrome (LCOS). Multiple interventions including levosimendan have been used in the prevention and treatment of LCOS. Preliminary studies reported lower mortality respect to placebo or other inotropes, however, recently, 3 clinical trials found no benefit against this outcome.
Our objective was to evaluate the evidence of levosimendan on mortality and secondary outcomes in patients undergoing cardiac surgery, and to determine the sources of heterogeneity.
We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of the clinical trials that evaluated the efficacy of levosimendan in patients undergoing cardiac surgery. We obtained the odds ratio (OR) of mortality and other outcomes such as kidney injury with dialysis requirement and LCOS, using fixed and random effects models. The risk of bias was assessed and the sources of heterogeneity were explored.
Of 47 studies identified, 14 studies were selected (n=2752). Regarding the mortality outcome and use of levosimendan, only a decrease was found in the studies of low quality (OR 0,30; CI 95%, 0,18 to 0,51). While high-quality studies, there was no protective effect (OR 0.99,95% CI 0.70-1.40) with an I2 = 0%. The quality of the studies and ejection fraction were the main sources of heterogeneity.
In high-quality studies, the use of levosimendan in patients undergoing cardiovascular surgery has no effect on 30-day mortality. There was a protective effect on postoperative renal failure with dialysis.
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