Novartis releases new drug for heart failure patients

Thanks to recent FDA approval, Novartis has released a new drug called Entresto to treat heart failure.

As a leading cardiologist overseeing research at Duke, Adrian Hernandez, MD, knows how rare it is to get new drugs like this to treat heart failure.

"In terms of new drugs for treating heart failure, we really haven't had something like this in over 15 years," says Hernandez.

What makes the FDA approval of Entresto most exciting to health professionals is the success rate it's shown in clinical trials.

"Compared to our standard treatment, which is an ace inhibitor, this actually adds a new agent to it that further decreases hormones that adversely affect the heart" explains Hernandez.

Hernandez says that treatment can actually worsen heart problems for patients. Entresto bypasses that by blocking the potentially harmful hormones.

"This actually translates into real benefits of 20 percent reduction in mortality and hospitalization for heart failure," Hernandez explained of the new treatment.

Hernandez says Entresto would be a good option for patients whose current medication isn't working, as well as those patients simply looking to upgrade their treatment.

"And the only reason that's the case is that this therapy was compared to our standard therapy, what we do, and it beat the standard, which is really hard to do," Hernandez said. "We never see that in clinical trials."

The drug maker, Novartis, announced last month that it was working to get the twice-a-day medication out to pharmacies as quickly as possible.

There are some patients who should not take this, including women who are or may become pregnant.

For more information:

Call 1-888-ENTRESTO or visit

Click here for Entresto full prescribing information.
Copyright © 2020 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.