Using angioplasty rather than drugs to treat patients with mild heart attacks has proven to be cost effective as well as clinically superior, according to a study in today's Journal of the American Medical Association. Angioplasty costs $586 more per patient over a six-month period, but a study published last year found a 40% lower risk of further cardiac events among patients who underwent angioplasty or bypass surgery soon after a mild heart attack. In general, performing too many invasive cardiac procedures will not stress the healthcare system as some observers have been concerned, the authors said. The study is part of the TACTICS-TIMI trial conducted by researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, and the Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta. Click here for the JAMA report. -- by Cinda Becker
Angioplasty tops drugs for mild heart attack: study
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