Exclusion of Elderly People from Randomized Clinical Trials of Drugs for Ischemic Heart Disease

Citation:

Bourgeois FT, Orenstein L, Ballakur S, Mandl KD, Ioannidis JPA. Exclusion of Elderly People from Randomized Clinical Trials of Drugs for Ischemic Heart Disease. J Am Geriatr Soc 2017;65:2354-2361.

Date Published:

Nov

Abstract:

OBJECTIVES: To measure exclusion of elderly adults from randomized trials studying drug interventions for ischemic heart disease (IHD) and describe the characteristics of these trials. DESIGN: Cross-sectional analysis. SETTING: Interventional clinical trials studying a drug intervention for IHD that started in 2006 and after were identified in ClinicalTrials.gov. Data were extracted on study features, including age-based inclusion criteria. Data on participants and their age distribution were collected from trial publications, investigator inquiry, and result data in ClinicalTrials.gov. PARTICIPANTS: Individuals aged 65 and older. MEASUREMENTS: Proportion of trials excluding individuals based on age, mean age of trial participants, and proportion of enrolled participants aged 65 and older and 75 and older. RESULTS: Of 839 identified trials, 446 (53%) explicitly excluded elderly adults. The most-frequent upper age limits were 80 (n = 164) and 75 (n = 114), with a median upper age limit of 80 (interquartile range 75-80). Trials with upper age limit exclusions tended to be smaller (median number of participants 100 vs 201, P < .001) and were more likely to be funded primarily by nonindustry sources (78.3% vs 70.0%, P = .006). The overall mean age of trial participants was 62.7 (mean maximum age 74). The estimated proportion of participants aged 65 and older was 42.5% and the estimated proportion aged 75 and older was 12.3%. CONCLUSION: Despite the high burden of IHD in elderly adults, the majority of drug trials do not enroll participants reflective of age-related prevalence of the disease.

Notes:

Bourgeois, Florence TOrenstein, LiatBallakur, SaritaMandl, Kenneth DIoannidis, John P AengR21 AG043715/AG/NIA NIH HHS/J Am Geriatr Soc. 2017 Nov;65(11):2354-2361. doi: 10.1111/jgs.14833. Epub 2017 Mar 17.

Last updated on 06/21/2018