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Drug-Coated Stents Still Spark Debate
Date:5/9/2008

To prevent a blood clot, patients with drug-coated stents must take a strict regimen of anti-clotting medications for at least one year following the procedure.

"Patents who are unable to comply with this regimen should be treated with bare-metal stent implantation," said Dr. Murtuza J. Ali, an interventional cardiology fellow at the Boston University Medical Center.

The patients who can't follow the anti-clotting drug regimen are mainly people who will have to receive bare-metal stents instead, Tu said. "If the person is going to need some sort of surgery over the next year, they may be better off receiving the bare-metal stent," he said.

If the patient isn't diligent about taking the anti-clotting drugs, a heart attack could result over time, Mauri said.

"We know if these medicines are stopped early, there are risks of blood clots forming inside the stent," she said.

More information

To learn more about stents, visit the American Heart Association.



SOURCES: Laura Mauri, M.D., assistant professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston; Jack Tu, M.D., Ph.D., FRCPC, senior scientist, Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and professor of medicine, University of Toronto; Murtuza J. Ali, M.D., interventional cardiology fellow, Boston University Medical Center; American Heart Association; U.S. National Institutes of Health


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