Monthly Archives: May 2012

FAME II: Should Fractional Flow Reserve (FFR) Be Mandatory?

Should Fractional Flow Reserve (FFR) Be Mandatory?Earlier today, the opening day of EuroPCR, Dr. Bernard De Bruyne presented preliminary results from the FAME II trial which tested the diagnostic power of Fractional Flow Reserve to guide PCI (stenting) of the coronary arteries. I wrote about FAME II back in January, when enrollment in the trial was halted for ethical reasons because the results of the ongoing FAME II trial were showing that the outcomes for stents in patients with stable angina were clearly superior to those in patients who were being treated with medications (a.k.a. Optimal Medical Therapy or OMT) alone. An independent Data Safety Monitoring Board advised that continuing the randomization would not change the findings and so, it was unethical to withhold the option of stents from this patient population. Continue reading

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Filed under Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC), COURAGE, FAME I / FAME II, FFR

An American Cardiologist in Paris: Be Careful in the Shower

FranticToday EuroPCR 2012 begins. More than 12,000 cardiologists descend on the Palais des Congrès in Paris to present and learn about stents, angioplasty, fractional flow reserve, etc.

Just be careful in the shower. Especially if you’re traveling with your wife! Continue reading

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Filed under France, Meetings & Conferences

Attention Stent Patients: Plavix Going Generic!

Plavix and StentOn May 17, less than two weeks from now, U.S. patent protection will end for Plavix (clopidogrel), the best-selling antiplatelet drug made by Bristol-Myers Squibb / Sanofi-Aventis. In 2010, worldwide sales of Plavix topped $6 billion (yes…billion!). For a typical stent patient, one 75mg tablet of Plavix a day costs more than $210 a month. Those with drug-eluting stents (80% or more of patients) must take Plavix for a year minimum. So the required medication actually can cost more than the stent itself. Continue reading

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Filed under Antiplatelet Medications, Patient Experience

Q&A with Dr. Jennifer Tremmel of Stanford

Jennifer Tremmel, MD

Jennifer Tremmel, MD

The Stanford School of Medicine blog “SCOPE” is featuring an “Ask the Doctor About Women’s Heart Health” article. The doctor is Jennifer Tremmel, MD, Clinical Director of Women’s Heart Health at Stanford Clinic, and Dr. Tremmel is no stranger to us here at Angioplasty.Org. You can read our interview with Dr. Tremmel about her experience starting the transradial approach to angioplasty at Stanford (she is also Director of Transradial Intervention there). Continue reading

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Filed under FFR, Myocardial Bridging