The effect of pioglitazone on recurrent myocardial infarction in 2,445 patients w type 2 diabetes & previous myocardial infarction: from PROactive Study

OBJECTIVES: This analysis from the PROactive (PROspective pioglitAzone macroVascular Events) study assesses the effects of pioglitazone on mortality and macrovascular morbidity in patients with type 2 diabetes and a previous myocardial infarction (MI). 

BACKGROUND: People with type 2 diabetes have an increased incidence of MI compared with the general population. Those with diabetes and MI have a worse prognosis than nondiabetic patients with cardiovascular disease. 

METHODS: The PROactive study was a prospective, multicenter, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of 5,238 patients with type 2 diabetes and macrovascular disease. Patients were randomized to either pioglitazone or placebo in addition to their other glucose-lowering and cardiovascular medication. Treatment of diabetes, dyslipidemia, and hypertension was encouraged according to the International Diabetes Federation guidelines. Patients were followed for a mean of 2.85 years. The primary end point was the time to first occurrence of macrovascular events or death. Of the total cohort, the subgroup of patients who had a previous MI (n = 2,445 [46.7%]; n = 1,230 in the pioglitazone group and n = 1,215 in the placebo group) was evaluated using prespecified and post-hoc analyses. 

RESULTS: Pioglitazone had a statistically significant beneficial effect on the prespecified end point of fatal and nonfatal MI (28% risk reduction [RR]; p = 0.045) and acute coronary syndrome (ACS) (37% RR; p = 0.035). There was a 19% RR in the cardiac composite end point of nonfatal MI (excluding silent MI), coronary revascularization, ACS, and cardiac death (p = 0.033). The difference in the primary end point defined in the main PROactive study did not reach significance in the MI population (12% RR; p = 0.135). The rates of heart failure requiring hospitalization were 7.5% (92 of 1,230) with pioglitazone and 5.2% (63 of 1,215) with placebo. Fatal heart failure rates were similar (1.4% [17 of the 92] with pioglitazone versus 0.9% [11 of the 63] with placebo). 

CONCLUSIONS: In high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes and previous MI, pioglitazone significantly reduced the occurrence of fatal and nonfatal MI and ACS. 


Erdmann E, Dormandy JA, Charbonnel B, Massi-Benedetti M, Moules IK, Skene AM. The effect of pioglitazone on recurrent myocardial infarction in 2,445 patients with type 2 diabetes and previous myocardial infarction: results from the PROactive (PROactive 05) Study. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2007;49(17):1772-80. 

Last Modified: 2/26/2013