Parkinson’s Drug Linked to Heart Failure
Mirapex (or Pramipexole), a drug used for the treatment of symptoms of Parkinson's disease, may be linked to an increased risk of heart failure.
FDA’s Findings on Drug’s Effects
The FDA is working with the drug’s maker, Boehringer, to clarify the risk of Mirapex.
- According to the FDA, several studies suggest an increased risk of heart failure among patients using Mirapex.
- These statistics are not only compared with drugs in other classes, but within its own class of dopamine agonists.
- One study in particular found an increased risk for heart failure with Mirapex compared with another Parkinson's treatment, levodopa, news outlets reported.
- Other dopamine agonists did not appear to be associated with a similar increase in risk. (Note: A dopamine agonist is a compound that activates dopamine receptors without dopamine.)
Although the study indicated a heightened risk of heart failure, according to the FDA, there were data limitations – specifically, there was an imbalance in the percentage of patients with cardiovascular risk factors. Nevertheless, the FDA is continuing to work with the manufacturers of Mirapex to clarify further risk of heart failure in conjunction with the use of this drug.
Boehringer Ingelheim is a German-based pharmaceutical company – one of the top 20 leading pharmaceutical companies in the world. Boehringer develops the drug Mirapex, a drug used not only for the treatment of Parkinson’s but also restless leg syndrome (RLS), and has other off-label uses.
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