Cardiovascular adverse events (CVAEs) associated with BRAF inhibitors alone versus combination BRAF/MEK inhibitors are not fully understood.
This study included all adult patients who received BRAF inhibitors (vemurafenib, dabrafenib, encorafenib) or combinations BRAF/MEK inhibitors (vemurafenib/cobimetinib; dabrafenib/trametinib; encorafenib/binimetinib). We utilized the cross‐sectional FDA’s Adverse Events Reporting System (FAERS) and longitudinal Truven Health Analytics/IBM MarketScan database from 2011 to 2018. Various CVAEs, including arterial hypertension, heart failure (HF), and venous thromboembolism (VTE), were studied using adjusted regression techniques.
In FAERS, 7752 AEs were reported (40% BRAF and 60% BRAF/MEK). Median age was 60 (IQR 49–69) years with 45% females and 97% with melanoma. Among these, 567 (7.4%) were cardiovascular adverse events (mortality rate 19%). Compared with monotherapy, combination therapy was associated with increased risk for HF (reporting odds ratio [ROR] = 1.62 (CI = 1.14–2.30); p = 0.007), arterial hypertension (ROR = 1.75 (CI = 1.12–2.89); p = 0.02) and VTE (ROR = 1.80 (CI = 1.12–2.89); p = 0.02). Marketscan had 657 patients with median age of 53 years (IQR 46–60), 39.3% female, and 88.7% with melanoma. There were 26.2% CVAEs (CI: 14.8%–36%) within 6 months of medication start in those receiving combination therapy versus 16.7% CVAEs (CI: 13.1%–20.2%) among those receiving monotherapy. Combination therapy was associated with CVAEs compared to monotherapy (adjusted HR: 1.56 (CI: 1.01–2.42); p = 0.045).