January 13, 2010

Heart treatment guidelines often not followed

By Kelley Luckstein

Researchers found evidence that patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) -- in which plaque build-up starves the heart of its blood supply -- receive more recommendations for angioplasty and fewer recommendations for coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG) than indicated by current guidelines…


Dr. Raymond J. Gibbons of the Mayo Clinic says the study raises valid concerns, particularly about the way medical tests and procedures are paid for in the current US healthcare system. Of greatest concern, he writes, is the possibility that "the recommendations for (angioplasty) in patients indicated for CABG reflect a 'grow the business' and 'make it up in volume' mentality in response to declining reimbursement rates."


Reuters,  1/12/10

Tags: Cardiology, heart treatment guidelines

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