Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Cutting Plavix too soon could be deadly

From the Globe and Mail:
Patients given the blood-clot preventer Plavix after a heart attack or after receiving a stent have a far higher risk of heart attack or death in the three months after they stop taking the drug, U.S. researchers said on Tuesday.

They found a cluster of heart problems occurring within 90 days of stopping the drug in people whose heart disease was treated either with drugs or a stent to prop open their arteries.

"It was almost a twofold increased risk in that initial period compared to later follow-up periods," said Dr. P. Michael Ho of the Denver VA Medical Center, whose study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

People who have acute coronary syndrome -- an umbrella term for heart problems caused by reduced blood flow to the heart -- routinely get a prescription for Plavix, one of the world's best-selling medicines sold by Bristol-Myers Squibb Co and Sanofi-Aventis. ...more

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