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Boston Scientific: Heart device helps women more

Fri, 06/18/2010 - 10:45am
The Associated Press

Medical device maker Boston Scientific Corp. said Friday women received a greater benefit than men from its cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillators, according to an analysis of clinical trial data.

Cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillators shock the heart to correct irregular beats and then coordinate its pumping action.

Boston Scientific, based in Natick, Mass., said a sub-analysis of data from a study of 1,800 patients published last year showed that women had a 70 percent reduction in heart failure events compared to a 35 percent reduction for men. It also showed that women with mild heart failure saw a 72 percent reduction in death from any cause.

Company officials said in a statement the findings are noteworthy because these defibrillators have historically been underutilized in women compared to men with the same level of heart disease.

Boston Scientific's cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillators are approved to treat severe heart failure. The Food and Drug Administration is reviewing an application to expand treatment to patients with high-risk mild heart failure with left bundle branch block.

That condition reduces the heart's pumping ability by delaying the electrical activation of its left ventricle. This means portions of the left ventricle contract later than the rest of the heart muscle.

Shares of Boston Scientific shares rose 8 cents to $6.19 in afternoon trading.

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