Covidien, Stryker tout stroke study that used their stents

A comparative study to be published Jan. 1 in the New England Journal of Medicine found that treatment of stroke using stent thrombectomy devices manufactured by Covidien ($COV) and Stryker ($SYK) is twice as effective as treatment using medication alone.

In the control arm, which used the current standard of care, namely clot-busting drugs, positive outcomes were achieved 19% of the time, but when stent retrievers were also used, as occurred in the treatment arm, the success rate was almost double.

Both companies were quick to flaunt the results of the trial, dubbed "MR CLEAN," as proof that their device works. "The Trevo ProVue Retriever is designed to allow physicians to visualize blood clot interaction--the only such device on the market," said Mark Paul, president of Stryker neurovascular, about his company's stent retriever, in a statement. "It is our latest development in our commitment to providing the best tools for physicians treating stroke.

Covidien's Solitaire FR stent--Courtesy of Covidien

Meanwhile, Covidien talked up its Solitaire stent. "We remain committed to furthering the body of clinical evidence that drives best medical practice and improved patient outcomes, and we believe that the MR CLEAN study suggests that stent thrombectomy is an important treatment option that should be made available to patients suffering from moderate to severe stroke," said Brett Wall, president of Covidien's neurovascular division in a statement.

Both products are inserted through the leg and guided to the affected area of the brain.

Stryker says that more than 200,000 Americans and Europeans are hospitalized every year due to stroke caused by clots in the anterior arteries of the brain, while Covidien says 15 million people suffer a stroke annually worldwide, resulting in almost 6 million deaths.

- read the release from Stryker
- read the release from Covidien

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Study: Covidien's stroke device beats standard therapy

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