Background Adverse drug events (ADEs) with pulmonary vasodilator use in pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) are common. ADEs may contribute to worse quality of life; however, their relationship to prognosis is unknown. The objective of this study was to determine whether common ADEs after initiating subcutaneous treprostinil were associated with prognosis in PAH. Methods We assembled a retrospective cohort of participants from four clinical trials of treprostinil for PAH, including 908 participants who received subcutaneous treprostinil and 243 who received placebo at the time ADEs were ascertained. The occurrences of four common early ADEs (infusion reactions, headaches, jaw pain, or gastrointestinal side effects) were assessed during the eight weeks after starting the infusion. We used Cox proportional hazards to estimate associations between ADEs and mortality. Results No ADEs related to placebo were associated with mortality. In participants who received treprostinil, infusion reactions, headaches, and jaw pain were not associated with mortality. Gastrointestinal side effects occurring during the first eight weeks following treprostinil infusion were associated with a 57% increase in the hazard of mortality (95% CI: 14–118%). This relationship was unchanged after adjusting for demographic differences and differences in baseline PAH severity. Conclusions Gastrointestinal ADEs after starting subcutaneous treprostinil were associated with an increased risk for mortality. Increased mortality was not observed with other early ADEs or with gastrointestinal symptoms in participants who were not receiving treprostinil at the time. This hypothesis-generating association suggests ADEs may identify different phenotypes in PAH.
- Pulmonary hypertension
- Side effects
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine