(HealthDay News) — For patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), thrombus aspiration before percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) does not improve outcomes, according to a study published online September 1 in the New England Journal of Medicine. The study was published to coincide with the annual European Society of Cardiology Congress, held from August 30 to September 3 in Barcelona, Spain.

Bo Lagerqvist, MD, from Uppsala University in Sweden, and colleagues examined clinical outcomes at one year in a cohort of 7,244 patients with STEMI. Participants were randomized to undergo manual thrombus aspiration followed by PCI or to undergo PCI alone.

The researchers found that death from any cause occurred in 5.3 and 5.6% of patients in the thrombus-aspiration group and the PCI-only group, respectively (hazard ratio, 0.94; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.78–1.15; P=0.57). There were no significant between-group differences in hospitalization for myocardial infarction at one year (2.7 and 2.7%, respectively; hazard ratio, 0.97; 95% CI, 0.73–1.28; P=0.81); stent thrombosis (0.7 and 0.9%, respectively; 95% CI, 0.50–1.40; P=0.51); or in the composite of these outcomes (8.0 and 8.5%; hazard ratio, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.80–1.11; P=0.48).

“Routine thrombus aspiration before PCI in patients with STEMI did not reduce the rate of death from any cause or the composite of death from any cause, rehospitalization for myocardial infarction, or stent thrombosis at one year,” the authors write.

The study was partially funded by medical device companies.

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