While some patients' invasive procedures were found to improve chest pain and quality of life, other key findings did not differ significantly – namely, myocardial infarction, hospitalization for unstable chest pain or heart failure, cardiac arrest recovery, and death by cardiovascular causes.
Stents and bypass operations are commonly used in patients with heart attacks, but whether to intervene in patients who are stable – who have blockages or chest pain during exercise, but have no acute heart attack – was hotly debated.
The international study, launched in 2012, involved more than 5,000 patients in 37 countries, making it the largest study of its kind, the researchers said.
Our results suggest that the routine use of cardiac procedures was not superior to the risk of the endpoint of five-part disease or death compared to treatment with optimal medical therapy alone, y, "said study leader Dr. Judith Hochman a statement on Saturday.
"On the other hand, patients with symptoms that received heart treatment over the years had fewer symptoms and felt better," said Hochman, Harold Snyder Family Professor of Medicine and Senior Associate Dean for Clinical Sciences at NYU Langone Health.