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Costly, non-evidence based interventions for coronary artery disease

Larry Husten, on his Cardiobrief blog, reports:

Drug-eluting stents (DESs) cost Medicare an additional $1.57 billion per year, according to a study published online in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

In an editor’s note, Rita Redberg wrote that “it is time to clearly define what the value of this extraordinary investment has been in terms of patient benefits and study the harms and determine if we are getting good value for this outlay.”

In an interview on TheHeart.org, the lead author said most of these treatments “are occurring in a population that’s not getting any survival benefit or quality-of-life benefit out of it, that is what’s troubling.”

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