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Carvedilol (20 mg/kg, bid) or vehicle was given to rats surviving a myocardial infarction (MI) 24 h (n = 409). In rats with large MI, carvedilol partially preserved left ventricular (LV) function and intrinsic myocardial contractility and reactivity to β-adrenergic stimulation. Carvedilol led to scar thickening, increased LV hypertrophy, and decreased cardiac fibrosis but did not prevent LV dilatation. Carvedilol reduced cardiac expression of interleukin-1β but did not prevent cardiac fetal gene re-expression or modify cardiac oxidative stress. Despite these beneficial effects, carvedilol decreased survival (38.8%, versus vehicle, 50.6%) due to excessive early mortality. Thus, post-MI carvedilol has many beneficial effects, however, in this study it increased post-MI mortality, perhaps due to excessive hypotension.