Medtronic's aortic valve reduces death rates in trial

Medtronic's (MDT) CoreValve, an aortic valve that doctors can insert into the heart without cracking open ribs, cut death rates more than open-heart surgery in a trial of 747 people.

In the study, 14% of patients who received CoreValve died within a year of surgery vs 19% of those who had open-heart surgery.

"This is the type of evidence that changes guidelines and recommendations for care," says Mount Sinai Hospital's David Adams.

Edwards Lifesciences (EW) sells a similar device but it hasn't proved more effective than open-heart surgery and sales have been lower than expected. (PR)

Meanwhile, Medtronic plans to continue working on its Symplicity device for reducing blood pressure despite a surprising failure in trials. The company said "signals" in the data suggest that the treatment might benefit certain patients and that the procedure involving the device may not have been carried out correctly or completely during the testing. (PR)

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Comments (2)
  • Just Some Guy
    , contributor
    Comments (2450) | Send Message
    Reading the linked articles the Edwards and Medtronic devices each have positive and negative ratings numbers. Sounds like they could both use some more development. But even now, the procedure to use them must be a LOT cheaper and safer than open-heart surgery, even if the results after surgery are only about the same. Just the price savings must be enough to sell a lot of valves, insurance companies are likely to insist, and I think patients are going to agree.


    Pretty amazing approach.
    30 Mar 2014, 12:37 PM Reply Like
  • earl ledden
    , contributor
    Comments (29) | Send Message
    14% vs 19% is good news? Yikes! when I had open heart surgery I was told 4% wind up on a different table after surgery.
    31 Mar 2014, 08:47 AM Reply Like
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