Preventing heart disease in people suffering from chronic respiratory disease

PACE - Preventing Adverse Cardiac Events in COPD

About the study

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is the third-leading cause of global health-related disease and deaths. Heart disease is very common in people diagnosed with COPD and is often the cause of health-related sickness and hospitalisations, causing 30 – 50% of deaths. Studies repeatedly show that heart disease is often not diagnosed in persons with COPD, and when it is diagnosed it is often under-treated. People with COPD are also commonly not included in clinical trials of drugs which treat heart disease and heart-related deaths.

Beta (β)-blockers are medications often used to treat heart disease. In this study, we will be investigating whether pro-active treatment with a β-blocker in people with COPD can reduce heart-related events, such as strokes and heart attacks. This is important for people with COPD with either known or unknown underlying heart disease. The study also aims to investigate whether this treatment influences number of respiratory flare ups (exacerbations), hospitalisations, or pharmacological treatment.

Recruitment criteria

  • Diagnosed with COPD
  • Age between 40 to 85 years
  • Had a COPD flare up or exacerbation requiring treatment from their GP or hospital, in the last 2 years, and who can attend for visits and take the study medication over a two year period.

What’s involved?

If eligible for the study, you will be randomly allocated to either take a heart medication or matching placebo medication for a two-year period. You will have to complete some breathing function tests and have an ECG at various time points throughout the study, as well as complete other study assessments. To complete these tests and assessments you will need to attend a respiratory clinic. Over the two years you are in the study, you will be required to visit the respiratory clinic on up to nine separate occasions. In between these visits, the clinic will also contact you via telephone (total of nine phone calls over two years).