Drug-coated stents more effective

September 26, 2008 9:30:18 AM PDT
Drug-coated heart stents are more effective than standard metal stents, according to the largest study to date by Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women's Hospital. Stents are small metal tubes often used to treat blockages in the blood vessels of the heart.

For two years, researchers followed more than 7,000 heart attack patients who were given stents. The death rate in patients with drug-coated stents was nearly 3 percent lower than those with bare metal stents.

Drug-coated stents also required fewer repeat procedures.