Study: African-Americans treated with drug-eluting stents at higher risk for blood clots

August 31, 2010 by MassDevice staff

A study by the American Heart Assn. shows that African-American individuals have more than double the risk of other races for blood clots after receiving drug-coated stents.

AHA logo

African-Americans have double the risk for blood clots after being treated with drug-eluting stents, according to a a study published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Assn.

In as few as 30 days, race was the strongest predictor for clotting after stents were implanted, the study showed.

The researchers analyzed data from 7,236 patients who, between mid-2003 through 2008, were treated with stents coated with clot-prevention drugs.

African-Americans experienced clotting rates of 1.71 percent, versus 0.59 percent after 30 days for all other races. After three years, the disparity was similar, at 3.67 percent for African-Americans versus 1.25 percent for other races. When the researchers took into account common risk factors, such as hypertension and diabetes, they still found higher rates of clotting.

"The bottom line is this is not just because this population is sicker or less compliant, but there is something else there that needs to be explored," lead author Dr. Ron Waksman said in prepared remarks. "Physicians and patients need to know that African-Americans are at a higher risk of developing stent thrombosis, which is associated with heart attack or death."