An international study, to compare the effectiveness of invasive procedures vs. medicines for ischemia and stable heart disease, has found that preventive behaviors can avoid certain heart procedures.

The study, called ISCHEMIA, worked with more than 5,000 volunteers, patients with mild to moderate ischemia.

The volunteers were divided into two groups. One group underwent angioplasty with stent placement or coronary artery bypass grafting. The other half underwent only stent-free angioplasty along with a greater focus on lifestyle changes and medicines.

Fifty to Fifty

Both options, cardiac intervention, and preventive behavior showed a slight difference in their effectiveness in preventing heart attacks, cardiac deaths or cardiac-related hospitalizations.

Those who underwent invasive treatment showed a slightly higher chance of having a heart attack in the first year after the procedure.

The invasive procedure has proven to be more beneficial in reducing pain in people with frequent angina or chest pain.

The conclusion of the study suggests that patients with stable heart conditions who do not have frequent chest pain or angina should not rush to invasive surgery. Patients are advised to be patient, take medication, and focus primarily on lifestyle changes.

Recommended Lifestyle Changes

To prevent heart disease and treat ischemia, it is recommended that you stop smoking, reduce alcohol consumption, eat less food containing unhealthy fats and simple sugars. Start exercising, learn to relax, learn to manage stress. Reduce excess weight – which can go hand in hand with a change in eating habits.

Before you decide to undergo an invasive procedure, get more feedback on your health and treatment options.

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