Sunday, March 25, 2007

Results of New Study on Heart Stents Expected This Week

Article in the New York Times -- Test Results Due Out Soon Are Crucial to Stents’ Future, by Barnaby J. Feder.  Here's an excerpt:

Physicians and Wall Street analysts are eagerly awaiting news next week about heart stents that could have big implications for patients and stent makers alike.

At a national cardiology meeting on Tuesday, researchers plan to share the results of a major clinical trial investigating whether heart patients with chronic chest pains actually benefit from getting stents placed in their clogged coronary arteries. Financial analysts say any negative findings could hurt the two companies that dominate the $3.2 billion domestic stent business: Boston Scientific and Johnson & Johnson.

Many Wall Street analysts say they expect the trial to show that while stents improve blood flow by propping open the arteries, the devices do not perform any better than drugs in helping such patients live longer or avoid heart attacks. Some analysts predict that such findings would make cardiologists more cautious about recommending stenting to patients.


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