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Efficacy of Transradial Catheterization Studied

Randomized trial demonstrates similar results compared with the transfemoral approach

FRIDAY, Nov. 20 (HealthDay News) -- In patients undergoing coronary catheterization, transradial coronary angiography and angioplasty is as safe and effective as the transfemoral approach, according to a study in the November issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Interventions.

Martin Brueck, M.D., of the Clinic of Wetzlar in Germany, and colleagues randomly assigned 1,024 patients to undergo either the transradial or transfemoral approach between July 2006 and January 2008.

The researchers found that rates of successful catheterization were similar in the transradial and transfemoral groups (96.5 and 99.8 percent, respectively). However, they found that the transradial group had a significantly higher median procedural duration (40.2 versus 37 minutes) and median radiation exposure (41.9 versus 38.2 Gycm2). They also found that the transradial group had a significantly lower rate of major vascular complications (0.58 versus 3.71 percent).

"The study of Brueck et al notwithstanding, angiographers, like every other procedure-related specialist, should be performing the best procedure for the appropriate patient that has the best outcomes, lowest complications, lowest cost, and most patient comfort," states the author of an accompanying editorial. "For this reason alone, modern angiographers should be thinking, 'radial first then femoral' whenever possible."

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