-- Randy Dotinga
WEDNESDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- A new drug that had shown
promise in animal testing is not better than aspirin in preventing
a second stoke in someone who's already had one, a new study has
In fact, researchers stopped the study early because the drug,
terutroban, showed no extra benefit.
Previous research in animals had suggested that the drug was as
effective as aspirin at preventing blood clots, and scientists had
wondered whether it might have other positive effects on the human
The new study, by Dr. Marie-Germaine Bousser, of the
Lariboisiere Hospital in Paris and her colleagues, compared the
drug to aspirin in people who'd had an ischemic stroke, the type of
stroke caused by a blocked artery. Of the more than 19,000
participants, roughly half were assigned to take terutroban, and
the others took aspirin.
When tracked, on average, for the next 28 months, people who
took terutroban fared no better than those on aspirin, the study
"In a worldwide perspective, aspirin remains the gold standard antiplatelet drug for secondary stroke prevention, in view of its efficacy, tolerance and cost," the researchers wrote.
One expert agreed.
"Allowing for the 'gentler' conclusion that there is no difference between terutroban and aspirin for stroke prevention, aspirin remains a widely available and inexpensive treatment throughout the world," said Dr. Richard B. Libman, chief of the division of vascular neurology at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, N.Y. "Any new medication for stroke prevention is going to have to do better than this before it can replace 'good old' aspirin," he said.
But in a commentary, researchers from Chang Gung University
College of Medicine in Taiwan and the University of California, San
Diego, wrote that there's still more to learn about whether
terutroban could help people who have had a second stroke while on
"Trials that randomly assign patients with a breakthrough event while on aspirin to a newer antiplatelet drug or higher aspirin dose, rather than re-initiation of the original aspirin dose, could provide insights into this issue," they wrote. "Perhaps terutroban could be called on to perform again."
The study, published online May 25 in
The Lancet, was also to be presented Wednesday in Hamburg, Germany, at the European Stroke Conference.
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Copyright © EBSCO Publishing. All rights reserved.