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Beta-blockers are of zero benefit in patients with heart failure and reduced ejection fraction if they also have atrial fibrillation.

Those are the persuasive findings of a large and meticulously conducted meta-analysis that, according to one commentator, sets a new bar for how these types of analyses should be done.

Dr Dipak Kotecha (University of Birmingham, UK) presented the analysis Tuesday during the final clinical-trial-update session of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) 2014 Congress ; it was published simultaneously in the Lancet.