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PMCID: PMC3692364 DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.109.927988


BACKGROUND: Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor therapy improves clinical outcome and ventricular function in adults with heart failure. Infants with single-ventricle physiology have poor growth and are at risk for abnormalities in ventricular systolic and diastolic function. The ability of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor therapy to preserve ventricular function and improve somatic growth and outcomes in these infants is unknown.

METHODS AND RESULTS: The Pediatric Heart Network conducted a double-blind trial involving 230 infants with single-ventricle physiology randomized to receive enalapril (target dose 0.4 mg . kg(-1) . d(-1)) or placebo who were followed up until 14 months of age. The primary end point was weight-for-age z score at 14 months. The primary analysis was intention to treat. A total of 185 infants completed the study. There were 24 and 21 withdrawals or deaths in the enalapril and placebo groups, respectively (P=0.74). Weight-for-age z score was not different between the enalapril and placebo groups (mean+/-SE -0.62+/-0.13 versus -0.42+/-0.13, P=0.28). There were no significant group differences in height-for-age z score, Ross heart failure class, brain natriuretic peptide concentration, Bayley scores of infant development, or ventricular ejection fraction. The incidence of death or transplantation was 13% and did not differ between groups. Serious adverse events occurred in 88 patients in the enalapril group and 87 in the placebo group.

CONCLUSIONS: Administration of enalapril to infants with single-ventricle physiology in the first year of life did not improve somatic growth, ventricular function, or heart failure severity. The results of this randomized trial do not support the routine use of enalapril in this population.

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MeSH Keywords

Aldosterone; Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors; Antihypertensive Agents; Double-Blind Method; Enalapril; Endothelium, Vascular; Glomerular Filtration Rate; Heart Failure; Heart Ventricles; Humans; Infant; Stroke Volume


ACE Inhibitors; CHD