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The Heart Health Benefits of Farxiga – New Approval from the FDA

By Jimmy McDermott and Rhea Teng

Farxiga becomes the first SGLT-2 inhibitor drug approved to reduce the risk of hospitalization for heart failure in adults who have type 2 diabetes and heart disease or are at risk for heart disease

The FDA has approved Farxiga to reduce the risk of hospitalization for heart failure in adults with type 2 diabetes and heart disease, or at risk of heart disease. Farxiga is a once-daily pill, already approved in the US and Europe for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. This approval is exciting because Farxiga can now be used to protect the heart. 

The new approval was based on the DECLARE trial results, which showed that Farxiga, an SGLT-2 inhibitor, can prevent hospitalization for heart failure. Data presented at the American Heart Association conference compared Farxiga to placebo (a “nothing” pill) and found that Farxiga:

  • Reduced the risk of heart-related death and hospitalization for heart failure by 17%. This benefit mainly was driven by reduction in heart failure hospitalizations by 27%;

  • Decreased A1C by an average of 0.42%;

  • Decreased body weight by an average of four pounds; and

  • Lowered the risk of kidney complications by 47%.

Though the kidney benefits of Farxiga were not included in the approval, Farxiga is currently being studied in people with kidney disease. Farxiga is also being reviewed to treat heart failure in people with and without diabetes based on the DAPA-HF trial results.

More on heart failure:

Heart failure is a chronic condition where the heart is unable to adequately pump blood. People with diabetes are 2-2.5 times more likely to develop heart failure than people without diabetes – read our deep dive on heart failure here.

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