Stent procedure is not useful for patients with angina, study claims

stent procedure is not useful for patients with angina study claims

A study by researchers from Imperial College, London suggests that undergoing a stent procedure to widen the arteries is useless and a waste of time for people with angina. Angina is a condition, which is symptomized by chest pain after physical activity due to obstructed blood flow to the heart. A metallic tube, known as a stent, is inserted in the arteries to widen them in patients with angina. However, the study indicated no remarkable benefit of stent procedure with respect to symptoms and patients’ quality of life.

According to a report, 2 million people in the UK and 10 million people in the U.S. are suffering from angina. This study included 200 people, who either had a sham procedure or stent operation. It was widely believed that stent help improves conditions of angina patients, but when participants’ ability to exercise was examined, the stent-receiving patients indicated little difference.

The participants went through an exercise examination to determine the effect of the stent. Patients, who were treated with percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) were found to have an increase in exercise time of 28.4 seconds. On the other hand, participants, who were given an angiogram with the help of a catheter, but no stent, showed an increase of 11.8 seconds in their exercise time. According to researchers, this difference is statistically insignificant.

Lead author of the study, Dr. Rasha Al-Lamee said, “It seems that the link between opening a narrowing coronary artery and improving symptoms is not as simple as everyone had hoped. Surprisingly, even though the stents improved blood supply, they didn’t provide more relief of symptoms compared to drug treatments – at least in this patient group.”


Dr. Lamee concluded, “While these findings are interesting and deserve more attention, they do not mean that patients should never undergo the procedure for stable angina. It may be that some patients opt to have an invasive procedure overtaking long-term medication to control their symptoms.”