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Home Industry News Pre-intervention drugs ‘harm heart attack patients’

Pre-intervention drugs ‘harm heart attack patients’

20th February 2006

Heart attack patients gain no benefit from drug treatment before angioplasty or stent replacement and may even be harmed by them, according to new research.

Although currently common practice for improving outcomes in patients with sudden heart attack, scientists from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in the US claim the application of drugs before revascularisation procedures do not benefit the patient at all.

Investigating the effect of ST-elevation drugs, Dr Ellen Keeley and her team reviewed data from 17 trials, comparing the outcome of ST-elevation heart attack patients and those undergoing angioplasty/stent placement alone.

The findings revealed pre-intervention drugs increased the rate of death in the patients, whilst also increasing the risk of non-fatal heart attack, bleeding, stroke and the need for repeat revascularisation treatment.

Dr Keeley states: “Drug facilitated angioplasty or stent placement offers no benefit over primary intervention in ST-elevation heart attack and should not be used outside the context of randomised controlled trials.

“Furthermore facilitated interventions with thrombolytic-based regimens should be avoided.”

In an accompanying comment, Dr Gregg Stone from Columbia University Medical Center and Bernard Gersh from the Mayo Clinic, state: “The results of this quantitative review are unequivocal and surprising: facilitated angioplasty compared with primary angioplasty alone, rather than saving lives as expected, results in an increase in mortality, along with greater rates of reinfarction, urgent repeat revascularisation, major bleeding, haemorrhagic stroke, and total stroke.”

track© Adfero Ltd

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