Johnson & Johnson Fires Back

Days after a study highlighted risks of drug-coated stents, J&J unleashed a torrent of data saying the devices are safe. But it faces big challenges

Johnson & Johnson has been put on the defensive after the release of research that called into question the safety of a medical device pioneered by J&J. On Sept. 3, a group of scientists at the World Congress of Cardiology in Barcelona presented research showing that stents—the diminutive wire tubes used to prop open clogged arteries—may pose more dangers to patients when they're covered with drugs, rather than made of bare metal. The researchers said drug-coated stents raise the risk of fatal blood clots and that the danger is greatest with J&J's product, Cypher. Patients implanted with the J&J device face a 38% higher risk of adverse events, the researchers said.

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