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No Advantage to Adding Inferior Vena Cava Filters to Anticoagulation (28 Apr 2015)

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Despite a lack of supporting evidence  many patients with acute venous thromboembolism (VTE) receive inferior vena cava filters to prevent pulmonary embolism (PE). Now a new study published in JAMA offers no evidence of benefit for the use of these devices in a high-risk population already receiving anticoagulant drugs. A group of French physicians randomized nearly…

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Cangrelor Finally Gets Nod From FDA Advisory Panel (16 Apr 2015)

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On Wednesday the FDA’s Cardiovascular and Renal Drugs Advisory Committee voted 9-2-1 to recommend approval of cangrelor during PCI to reduce the risk of periprocedural thrombotic events such as MI, stent thrombosis, and ischemia driven revascularization. The news follows a decade of efforts to develop the drug — a potent, fast-acting, and reversible  antiplatelet agent. After the failure of…

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FDA Grants Premarket Approval to AbioMed Heart Pump (24 Mar 2015)

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The FDA said on Tuesday that it had approved Abiomed’s Impella 2.5 System. According to the company, it is is the first hemodynamic support device to gain FDA approval for use during high risk PCI procedures. The miniature blood pump is designed for temporary use in patients with severe symptomatic coronary artery disease and diminished (but…

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Better Than BEST? An Observational Comparison of PCI and CABG for Multivessel Coronary Disease (16 Mar 2015)

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Sripal Bangalore, MD, MHA

Sripal Bangalore discusses his observational study comparing CABG with everolimus-eluting stent PCI in patients with multivessel coronary disease, alongside findings from the BEST randomized trial.

Avatar of Larry Husten, PHD

A Requiem for Routine Thrombectomy? (16 Mar 2015)

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Primary PCI is the treatment of choice in the early period of an acute MI. One limitation is the risk of dislodging part of the clot, leading to new downstream blockages of the microvasculature. One strategy that has been under development for a long time is thrombectomy, in which a device extracts the clot prior…

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Encouraging 5-Year Results for TAVR (15 Mar 2015)

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The publication five years ago of the two-part PARTNER trial brought a major change to the treatment of aortic valve replacement. The trial demonstrated that transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) was a reasonable treatment option, first for patients who were not surgical candidates and then for patients who were at high risk for surgery. One…

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DAPT ‘Approaching the Point of Diminishing Returns’? (14 Mar 2015)

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After a myocardial infarction (MI), patients remain at high risk for recurrent events. The precise role of dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) to lower this risk has been the subject of considerable disagreement.  Now a new study offers fresh evidence that prolonged DAPT can lower risk over a long period, but only at the cost of…

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FDA Approves Watchman Left Atrial Appendage Closure Device for AF (14 Mar 2015)

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The FDA has approved Boston Scientific’s long-delayed Watchman Left Atrial Appendage Closure Device. According to the company, the Watchman is indicated as an alternative to long-term warfarin therapy for the reduction of thromboembolism from the left atrial appendage in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation at increased risk for stroke and systemic embolism. Although an alternative to…

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First Good Look at TAVR in The Real World (10 Mar 2015)

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Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is one of the most important advances in cardiovascular medicine in recent years. Although it is associated with significant risks, TAVR can offer some patients a less invasive alternative to traditional aortic valve replacement surgery.  Because of early concerns about potential overuse and misuse of TAVR, many observers have been eagerly…

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How Appropriate Are Appropriate Use Criteria for Coronary Angiography? (9 Mar 2015)

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Harindra C Wijeysundera, MD, PhD

Harindra C. Wijeysundera discusses his research group’s use of registry data from Ontario, Canada, in applying the 2012 appropriate use criteria for diagnostic catheterization.