Hospital use of drug-eluting stents surpassed that of bare-metal stents only six months after the drug-eluting variety received Food and Drug Administration approval, a new study by Evanston, Ill.-based Solucient shows.
In the study, released today, the healthcare business information company noted that only about 1,400 of 55,800 stent procedures conducted in U.S. hospitals in April 2003 -- the month the technology was approved -- used drug-eluting stents. In September 2003, the number of drug-eluting stent procedures outpaced those using bare-metal stents by 2,300. In December 2003, drug-eluting stents were used in 33,400 procedures, nearly 55% of the total of 60,800 procedures for the month.
"The growth of drug-eluting stents during the last nine months of 2003 far surpassed industry predictions about the uptake of this new technology," said Kaveh Safavi, M.D., chief medical officer at Solucient, in a news release.
The rapid conversion to drug-eluting stents was most pronounced in hospitals in the northeastern United States, followed by those in the South, Solucient said.
"The growth opportunity for drug-eluting stents will impact hospitals, cardiology services and makers of related drugs such as anti-thrombolytics, anti-platelets and anti-coagulants," Safavi said in the release.
To date, Johnson & Johnson/Cordis is the only manufacturer with federal approval to sell drug-eluting stent technology, Solucient said, though Boston Scientific, Guidant and Medtronic have approvals pending before the FDA.