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Drug-eluting stents demonstrate better outcomes after 1 year than bare metal stents
Date:3/31/2014

WASHINGTON (March 31, 2014) Use of drug-eluting stents is associated with a lower risk of major cardiovascular events at one year compared to bare metal stents when followed by an individualized course of blood-thinning medication among patients previously thought to be uncertain candidates for drug-eluting stents due to their heightened risk of bleeding or blood clots, according to research presented at the American College of Cardiology's 63rd Annual Scientific Session.

Positive study findings for patients receiving a shorter than currently recommended course of blood thinners may call into question existing guidelines for a more prolonged anti-platelet therapy following placement of drug-eluting stents, which points to the need for a more personalized approach, according to authors.

This multinational, single-blinded trial involved 1,606 patients who were randomly assigned to receive a specific type of drug-eluting stent (Zotarolimus-eluting stent) or a bare metal stent. The purpose of the study was to assess whether implantation of the drug-eluting stent followed by an individualized course of dual anti-platelet therapy a combination of aspirin and an anti-platelet that thins the blood to prevent clots would decrease the incidence of 12-month major adverse cardiovascular events compared to implantation with a bare metal stent among patients classified as uncertain candidates for drug-eluting stents. A significantly higher number of patients in the bare metal stent group had major adverse cardiovascular events at one year, including all-cause death, non-fatal heart attacks or any procedures to re-open the artery.

"Given the assumed risks, we were surprised by the lower rate of heart attack and blood clots among our drug-eluting stent patients," said Marco Valgimigli, M.D., Ph.D., cardiologist and associate professor, Erasmus University Medical Center in the Netherlands, and lead investigator of the study. "For the first time
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Contact: Beth Casteel
bcasteel@acc.org
202-375-6275
American College of Cardiology
Source:Eurekalert

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