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The Use Of Invasive Treatment For Life Threatening Heart Conditions Questioned

A new study shows invasive procedures do not necessarily improve survival rate for patients hospitalized for life-threatening heart conditions.//

Researchers studied more than 28,000 patients in 14 countries who were hospitalized for acute coronary syndrome between April 1999 and March 2003. Most patients were admitted to hospitals with cardiac catheterization facilities and underwent more invasive procedures than patients admitted first to hospitals without such facilities.

According to researchers, the risk of death at six months was 14-percent higher among patients first admitted to hospitals with specialist facilities and there was also a higher risk of major bleeding and stroke. Hence researchers say although the results do not suggest an invasive approach is harmful to patients, a more restrictive and selective use of invasive procedures should be employed .

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