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Study Questions Benefits of Antibleeding Drugs Like Plavix

Filed March 21st, 2012 Laurie

According to a meta-analysis that appeared in the March 20 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, antiplatelet treatment may actually harm patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) rather than help them. The platelets, which have been found to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), pose bleeding risks that far outweigh the benefits of antiplatelet treatment, but there is still very little research on the subject.

An estimated 10 to 15 percent of the population suffers from CKD and that number is likely to rise, with obesity and diabetes on the increase. Antiplatelet regiments are often prescribed to treat CVD, but people with CKD have a higher risk of bleeding on these drugs.

One trial included in the analysis showed that six strokes, fatal or nonfatal, occurred in 411 patients, alluding to the fact that the drug Plavix as an add-on to standard therapy had “uncertain” effect on stroke. Using antiplatelet therapy in conjunction with standard therapy had little or no impact on all-cause mortality in the study.

The information gained from the analysis was deemed “low quality” but researchers said the data still proved that antiplatelet therapy plus standard care increased major and minor bleeding.

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