DALLAS, Oct. 7 -- For treating heart attacks, the blood thinner hirulogis better than heparin when added to a "clot-buster" to dissolve blood clots andreopen clogged arteries, according to a report in today's American HeartAssociation journal Circulation.
New Zealand researchers found that individuals given hirulog were morelikely to have their arteries "open up" following the clot-busting orthrombolytic treatment. Streptokinase was the thrombolytic used in this study.
"At 48 hours, the artery has opened up in 35 percent of heparin and 48percent of high-dose hirulog patients," reports Harvey White, M.D., of thecardiology department at Green Lane Hospital. The study included 412 patients:140 were given heparin, 136 were given low-dose hirulog and 136 were givenhigh-dose hirulog.
Researchers point out that within the first 24 hours after clot-busingtreatment, about 5-15 percent of individuals may have new clots forming, aproblem that, in some cases, causes death.
White says a large clinical trial will be conducted in 17,000 patientsto find out if hirulog given before streptokinase will improve survival. Earlysuccessful reperfusion or reopening is normally associated with survival.
Materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.
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