Routinely removing the blood clot before performing PCI on patients presenting with STEMI doesn't affect patient outcomes, according to an online report in the New England Journal of Medicine and a presentation at the European Society of Cardiology meeting. The registry-based randomized trial conducted by researchers at Örebro University Hospital in Sweden determined the 30-day rate of death from all causes was 3% for patients who underwent PCI without having the clot removed and 2.8% for patients who had thrombus aspiration. The results "suggest that the mortality benefit with thrombus aspiration that was observed in earlier clinical trials may have been a chance finding," wrote Dr. Robert Byrne and Dr. Adnan Kastrati in a NEJM editorial.

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