The Ischemia Trial
A recent angina research trial is the Ischemia trial. This is a large international randomised clinical trial which looked at how we treat patients with stable angina. Patients taking part were allocated randomly to 2 groups – treatment with tablets or by intervention in the cardiac catheter laboratory.
What is angina?
Angina is the chest pain felt when the heart muscle isn’t getting enough oxygen for what is is trying to do. It is usually caused by a narrowing in one or more of the arteries that supply the heart muscle. It often comes on during exercise to start with, and goes away when resting. Severe or unstable angina can come on at rest. It is typically described as a tightness in the chest, or sometimes a heaviness.
Is it dangerous?
Angina does not cause any lasting damage to the heart, but does need to be investigated and treated.
What did the trial show?
The Ischemia trial showed us that patients who had stable angina were equally safe to be treated with medicines as they were by having an angiogram and stent inserted. A stent is a scaffold that is placed across a narrow coronary artery. This keeps it open following treatment with a balloon in the cardiac catheter laboratory. This has changed how we practice our medicine today and we are now confident that this group of patients can be safety treated with medicines. You can read more about the trial here.
Is the trial finished?
Recruitment into the trial is finished. Our team was the second highest recruiting site in the world! However, we continue to follow up the patients who took part in the trial through their health records.
Do you have another angina research trial I can take part in now?
Currently we don’t. However we are starting new trials all the time, so if you are interested please get in touch and we will let you know when one is available.