Comparison of safety of sotalol versus amiodarone in patients with Atrial fibrillation and coronary artery disease

Jonathan P. Piccini, Sana M. Al-Khatib, Daniel M. Wojdyla, Linda K. Shaw, John R. Horton, Yuliya Lokhnygina, Kevin J. Anstrom, Tracy Dewald, Nancy Allen-Lapointe, Benjamin A. Steinberg, Kevin Thomas, James P. Daubert, Eric D. Peterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Sotalol is a commonly prescribed antiarrhythmic drug (AAD) used for maintaining sinus rhythm in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). Although randomized studies have found that sotalol can significantly delay time to AF recurrence, its association with mortality is less clear, particularly among those with coronary artery disease. We examined outcomes of 2,838 patients with coronary artery disease and AF. Using Cox proportional hazards modeling, landmark analysis, and time-dependent covariates for drug therapy, we compared cumulative survival among patients treated with sotalol (n = 226), amiodarone (n = 856), or no AAD (n = 1,756). Median follow-up was 4.2 years (interquartile range [IQR] 2.0-7.4). The median age was 68 years (IQR 60-75). Compared with those treated with amiodarone or no AAD, patients treated with sotalol were less likely to be black (6% vs 13% vs 13%) and have a previous myocardial infarction (35% vs 51% vs 48%) or a left ventricular ejection fraction <40% (13% vs 26% vs 21%). In follow-up, persistence of sotalol was limited; 97% of patients treated with sotalol were treated for <25% of the follow-up period. In adjusted analysis accounting for time on therapy, sotalol use was associated with an increased risk of all-cause death compared with no drug (hazard ratio 1.53, 95% confidence interval 1.19 to 1.96, p = 0.0009), but a decreased risk of death compared with amiodarone (hazard ratio 0.72, 95% confidence interval 0.55 to 0.91, p = 0.0141). In conclusion, sotalol therapy was more frequently used in patients with fewer co-morbidities, often discontinued early in follow-up, and was associated with increased mortality compared with no AAD but decreased mortality relative to amiodarone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)716-722
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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