FRIDAY, May 20, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- An updated guideline adds two new types of drugs to the list of treatment options for heart failure.
In people with the condition, the heart can't pump enough blood throughout the body.
The two new treatments in the updated guidelines are an angiotensin receptor-neprilysin inhibitor (valsartan/sacubitril), sold as Entresto, and a sinoatrial node modulator (ivabradine), sold as Corlanor, according to the American College of Cardiology, the American Heart Association and the Heart Failure Society of America.
Previously recommended drugs for these patients include angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blockers, beta blockers and diuretics.
"Treatment options for patients with heart failure have expanded considerably. There is more hope than ever before for patients with heart failure," guideline update committee vice chair Dr. Mariell Jessup said in a news release from the heart groups. She is a professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia.
"These guideline recommendations will serve as a tool to guide the choice of therapy and, in turn, improve outcomes," Jessup added.
All the recommended medications are meant to relax blood vessels, reduce (biological) stress and improve the function of the heart, according to the news release.
Dr. Clyde Yancy, guideline update committee chair, explained that "not every patient is a good candidate for every drug; these guidelines can help physicians decide who best fits which treatment." Yancy is chief of cardiology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.
"This document details the benefits and risks of these new therapies so that patients at high risk can be directed towards alternative therapies," he added.
The updated guideline was published online May 20 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Circulation, and the Journal of Cardiac Failure.
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more on heart failure.