Clinical Characteristics and Implications of Bradycardia in COVID‐19 Patients Treated with Remdesivir: A Single‐Center Retrospective Cohort Study

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Clinical Drug Investigation



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Background and Objectives: Remdesivir is an antiviral drug used to treat coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) with a relatively obscure cardiac efect profle. Previous studies have reported bradycardia associated with remdesivir, but few have examined its clinical characteristics. The objective of this study was to investigate remdesivir associated bradycardia and its associated clinical characteristics and outcomes. Methods: This is a single-institution retrospective study that investigated bradycardia in 600 patients who received remdesivir for treatment of COVID-19. A total of 375 patients were included in the study after screening for other known causes of bradycardia (atrioventricular [AV] nodal blockers). All patients were analyzed for episodes of bradycardia from when remdesivir was initiated up to 5 days after completion, a time frame based on the drug’s putative elimination half-life. Univariate and multivariate statistical tests were conducted to analyze the data. Results: The mean age of the sample was 56.63 ± 13.23 years. Of patients who met inclusion criteria, 49% were found to have bradycardia within 5 days of remdesivir administration. Compared to the cohort without a documented bradycardic episode, patients with bradycardia were signifcantly more likely to experience inpatient mortality (22% vs 12%, p = 0.01). The patients with bradycardia were found to have marginally higher serum D-dimer levels (5.2 vs 3.4 µg/mL, p = 0.05) and were more likely to undergo endotracheal intubation (28% vs 14%, p = 0.008). Male sex, hyperlipidemia, and bradycardia within 5 days of completing remdesivir were signifcant predictors of inpatient mortality. No signifcant diferences in length of stay were found. Conclusions: Bradycardia that occurs during or shortly after remdesivir treatment in COVID-19 patients may be associated with an increased rate of in-hospital mortality. However, COVID-19 and its cardiac complications cannot be excluded as potential contributors of bradycardia in the present study. Future studies are needed to further delineate the cardiac characteristics of COVID-19 and remdesivir.

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Antiviral agents; Bradycardia; COVID-19 (Disease)


Cardiovascular System | Pharmaceutical Preparations | Virus Diseases



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