Abbott Laboratories (ABT)’ Absorb dissolving heart stent was announced effective and safe after it was placed in a clogged artery, while the company’s market-leading Xience device also performed better in the first scientific trial.
Absorb’s heart stents work in similar way as the traditional counterparts by propping open arteries having blockages so as to restore normal blood flow.
The best part of the Illinois-based company’s stents is that it softens over several months and finally dissolves in two to three years unlike the regular metal stents that remain permanently in place. The soft Absorb stents helps the treated artery to resume its normal flexibility which helps in its contraction and expansion.
For the clinical trial, which was conducted primarily in Europe, the researchers involved 501 people diagnosed with coronary artery disease (CAD).
According to the researchers, the Absorb stent technology was found to be as good as or non-inferior to Xience device.
“At the end of the day, we have shown that in this patient population and in this trial, Absorb is performing as well as Xience, and Xience was very good. Perhaps we are seeing what was reported to be some of the benefits of Absorb, even at one year — a more patient-friendly implant that has the opportunity to reduce angina,” said John Capek, the Abbott Park, executive vice president for medical devices.
After one year of the European study, the researchers came across the most notable difference and that was the rate of angina.
Angina is a kind of chest pain linked with lower blood flow to the heart. The heart woe can boost additional burden to the healthcare costs as it requires repeated doctor and hospital visits. Moreover, the health condition will also hamper patient activity.
Over the course of the study, the researchers found that the rate of angina in patients receiving Absorb was 16.4 percent against those who received Xience whose rate was 25.6 percent.
Study lead author Dr. Patrick Serruys said, “The lower rate of chest pain observed in people treated with Absorb is a promising finding that shows that Absorb may offer people unique quality of life benefits beyond the excellent clinical outcomes already offered with drug eluting stents.”
The findings were presented at a late-breaking session of the 26th Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) at the annual scientific symposium of the Cardiovascular Research Foundation in Washington D.C.
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