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Drug-Eluting Stents May Cut Mortality After Heart Attack

They're also linked to lower rates of recurrent myocardial infarction and repeat revascularization

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Two years after undergoing stenting for acute myocardial infarction, patients who received drug-eluting stents have significantly lower rates of death and repeat revascularization than those who received bare-metal stents, researchers report in the Sept. 25 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Laura Mauri, M.D., of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, and colleagues compared outcomes in 7,217 patients (4,016 with drug-eluting stents and 3,201 with bare-metal stents) who were treated in 2003-2004 for acute myocardial infarction.

After performing a one-to-one matched analysis, the researchers found that drug-eluting stents were associated with significantly lower two-year risk-adjusted mortality rates among all patients with myocardial infarction (10.7 percent versus 12.8 percent), those with ST-segment elevation (8.5 percent versus 11.6 percent), and those without ST-segment elevation (12.8 percent versus 15.6 percent). They also found that drug-eluting stents were associated with reduced rates of recurrent myocardial infarction and repeat revascularization.

"The primary purpose of our analysis was to determine whether there was any harm associated with the use of drug-eluting stents as compared with bare-metal stents in an unselected population of patients with myocardial infarction," the authors write. "The observation of a reduction in mortality rates with drug-eluting stents was unanticipated and merits confirmation in randomized trials."

Mauri disclosed financial relationships with Medtronic Vascular, Abbott Vascular, Boston Scientific and Cordis.

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