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Boston Scientific Takes Conor to Court over DES

Executive Summary

Boston Scientific has filed suite in the Netherlands to keep Conor Medsystems from selling its paclitaxel-coated stent in Europe. This is the latest effort by interventional cardiology companies to use litigation to protect market share.

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While the greater efficacy of drug-eluting stents (DES) compared to bare-metal stents is widely accepted, over the past year, data has continued to build showing that first-generation DES also have a higher late-stage in-stent thrombosis risk, a complication that can cause death 30% of the time, according to some estimates. The findings of these studies had some physicians at this year's World Congress of Cardiology calling for "an immediate halt to DES overuse." However, most conceded that additional randomized trials will be needed to fully understand the potential risks associated with these devices.

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