We're building a better ClinicalTrials.gov. Check it out and tell us what you think!
ClinicalTrials.gov Menu

Beta-Blocker Evaluation in Survival Trial (BEST)

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00000560
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : October 28, 1999
Last Update Posted : April 14, 2016
Information provided by:
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)

Brief Summary:
To determine if addition of a beta-blocker to standard therapy in Class III and Class IV heart failure patients reduced total mortality.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Cardiovascular Diseases Heart Diseases Heart Failure, Congestive Heart Failure Drug: adrenergic beta antagonists Phase 3

Detailed Description:


Controlled and uncontrolled studies suggested that beta-blockade improves ventricular function in congestive heart failure. Several trials suggested that beta-blockers may also reduce mortality. In the Beta-Blocker Heart Attack Trial, patients with a history of heart failure had less cardiac and sudden-death mortality than those who did not. Patients with a low ejection fraction in the Cardiac Arrhythmia Suppression Trial who were treated with beta-blockade also had a reduction in mortality. The Metoprolol in Dilated Cardiomyopathy trial randomized patients with dilated cardiomyopathies to treatment with metoprolol or placebo. There was a trend toward reduction in a morbidity and mortality endpoint in patients treated with metoprolol, but this was due entirely to a reduction in the need for cardiac transplantation. Thus, despite a reasonable theoretical basis and suggestive clinical studies, the concept that beta-blockers reduced mortality in congestive heart failure patients was unproved.


Randomized, double-blind, multicenter. Patients were assigned to standard therapy plus the addition of a beta-blocker (bucindolol) versus a placebo. The primary endpoint was total mortality. A radionuclide ventriculogram was performed within 60 days of randomization. History, physical examination, clinical laboratory studies, chest x-ray, electrocardiogram, and plasma norepinephrine levels were obtained within 14 days of randomization. Patients were stratified by hospital, congestive heart failure etiology, ejection fraction, and gender, and were assigned to a treatment group by an adaptive balancing scheme ("biased coin" randomization). Patients were randomized to either placebo plus standard congestive heart failure treatment or to the beta-blocker plus standard congestive heart failure treatment and followed for a minimum of 18 months. The over three year recruitment period began in May 1995 at the first 35 sites. An additional 55 sites began recruitment on August 14, 1995. Recruitment ended in December, 1998 with the enrollment of 2,708 patients.

Layout table for study information
Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Allocation: Randomized
Masking: Double
Study Start Date : June 1994
Study Completion Date : September 1999

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 100 Years   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
Men and women, ages 18 and over. Patients had compensated congestive heart failure due to idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy or coronary disease with ejection fraction less than or equal to 0.35, were in the New York Heart Association functional class III or IV, and were taking an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor, digitalis, and if needed, a diuretic. Patients with a specific indication for, or contraindication to, beta-blockade were excluded.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT00000560

Sponsors and Collaborators
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Layout table for investigator information
OverallOfficial: Philip Lavori Veterans Administration Hospital
Study Data/Documents: Individual Participant Data Set  This link exits the ClinicalTrials.gov site
Identifier: BEST
NHLBI provides controlled access to IPD through BioLINCC. Access requires registration, evidence of local IRB approval or certification of exemption from IRB review, and completion of a data use agreement.


Publications automatically indexed to this study by ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier (NCT Number):

Layout table for additonal information
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00000560    
Other Study ID Numbers: 104
First Posted: October 28, 1999    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: April 14, 2016
Last Verified: April 2005
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Layout table for MeSH terms
Heart Failure
Cardiovascular Diseases
Heart Diseases
Adrenergic Agents
Adrenergic beta-Antagonists
Neurotransmitter Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Adrenergic Antagonists