The following article is a part of conference coverage from the American College of Cardiology’s 70th Annual Scientific Session & Expo is being held virtually from May 15 to 17, 2021. The team at Cardiology Advisor will be reporting on the latest news and research conducted by clinicians and scientists in the field. Check back for more from the ACC 2021 .

Colchicine therapy is associated with a significant reduction in rates of major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE), myocardial infarction (MI), and stroke in people with coronary artery disease (CAD). These findings were presented during the American College of Cardiology Annual Meeting, held virtually from May 15 to 17, 2021.

The current study is important because in recently published randomized controlled trials, conflicting findings have been reported regarding the efficacy of colchicine in secondary prevention of adverse cardiovascular events in people with CAD.

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To evaluate the relevant published data, researchers from Vidant Roanoke-Chowan Hospital in Ahoskie, North Carolina, conducted a systematic search of PubMed and EMBASE electronic databases to identify randomized studies of the efficacy and safety of colchicine in patients with CAD. They then applied random- or fixed-effects models based on heterogeneity and calculated odds ratios (ORs) for MACE, MI, stroke, and cardiovascular death.

Eight randomized studies were identified for the analysis, including 6111 patients in the colchicine group and 6026 in the placebo group. Colchicine therapy was associated with significant reductions in MACE, MI, and stroke (ORs 0.67, 0.76, and 0.41; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.59-0.77, 0.62-0.92, and 0.26-0.65, respectively).

However, in comparing the colchicine vs placebo groups, no significant difference in rates of cardiovascular death and all-cause mortality was noted (ORs 0.75 and 1.09; 95% CI, 0.50-1.11 and 0.85-1.40, respectively). In terms of side effects, colchicine use was associated with significantly higher rates of adverse gastrointestinal events, compared with placebo (OR 1.79; 95% CI, 1.12-2.85).

“Colchicine leads to [a] significant reduction in MACE, MI, and stroke in patients with coronary artery disease,” the researchers concluded.

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Upadhaya S, Madala S, Tiwari K. Colchicine for secondary prevention of cardiovascular adverse events in patients with coronary artery disease: an updated meta-analysis. Presented at the American College of Cardiology (ACC) 2021 Annual Meeting; May 15-17, 2021.