AccessMyLibrary provides FREE access to millions of articles from top publications available through your library.
Byline: GLORIA LAU
For Americans who snub exercise, refuse to stop smoking and eat potato chips, recent medical news might sound like just another excuse to continue clogging the arteries.
But to cardiologists, the news is phenomenal. The first of the newest heart devices, called drug-coated stents, was launched this spring.
Stents are tiny mesh tubes inserted in arteries during angioplasty, a sort of plumbing surgery that clears clogged arteries. A million Americans a year undergo angioplasty.
Arteries held open by old-style, bare-metal stents tend to reclog in up to 25% of patients, usually within a year. This in-stent restenosis occurs when scar tissue builds up around the stent and forces patients to have a second angioplasty.
The new drug-coated stents reduce rates of restenosis by more than …