St. Jude Medical (NYSE:STJ) said a retrospective look at the Champion trial of its CardioMEMS HF implantable heart monitor showed it helped drive big reductions in mortality and hospitalization rates for heart failure patients.
St. Paul, Minn.-based St. Jude said the analysis of patients with heart failure and reduced ejection fraction compared the standard of care with and without CardioMEMS monitoring. The review showed that patients monitored using the CardioMEMS device over an average 17 months had a 57% reduction in mortality and a 43% reduction in hospitalizations due to heart failure, compared with patients treated only using the standard of care (optimal doses of guideline-directed medical therapy).
"For heart failure patients whose heart does not contract effectively, the risk for hospitalization and mortality is very high, even with appropriate evidence-based medical therapy. The findings from this analysis show us that use of the CardioMEMS HF system in addition to guideline-directed medical therapy can significantly reduce hospital admissions for these heart failure patients and for the first time, we also see a significant improvement in survival," lead investigator Dr. William Abraham, who presented the results at the American College of Cardiology’s annual meeting in San Diego over the weekend, said in prepared remarks.
The CardioMEMS device uses a wireless sensor implanted in the pulmonary artery via catheter to directly measure pressure in the vessel. It’s designed to help physicians manage patients’ medication to control their heart failure before visible changes to weight or blood pressure occur.
Late last year St. Jude said another retrospective look at the data from Champion significantly reduced 30-day hospital readmissions in Medicare-eligible patients – a key driver of the $227 million paid in readmission penalties by hospitals in 2013.
"The positive data based on pulmonary artery pressure management we see from the Champion trial continue to demonstrate groundbreaking ways our physician partners manage their heart failure patients within the realities of the changing health care landscape," St. Jude’s chief medical officer, Dr. Mark Carlson, said in a statement. "St. Jude Medical is pioneering a new standard of care for heart failure management and the CardioMEMS HF System is the cornerstone of our heart failure portfolio."
CardioMEMS could be St. Jude’s most important growth driver, according to Barclays analyst Matthew Taylor.
“In our view CardioMEMS is the most important catalyst for the stock near-term and STJ continues to expect $70 MM in 2015 sales,” Taylor wrote today in a note to investors. “Net-net, we continue to see value in STJ, view CardioMEMS as the most important near term factor for the stock, and think [atrial fibrillation] and Neuro could be bigger positives than The Street expects.”