Washington, May 21 (ANI): A combination of aspirin and the anti-platelet drug dipyridamole could significantly reduce blockages and extend the life of new artery-vein access grafts used for hemodialysis, according to study by the Dialysis Access Consortium (DAC).
Very often, artery-vein access grafts, called arteriovenous (AV) grafts, fail due to narrowing of blood vessels (stenosis) at the graft site and subsequent clotting, which block the flow of blood.
And a blocked graft becomes useless for dialysis and is a major cause of worsening health in dialysis patients.
In the DAC trial, the researchers observed that the combination treatment decreased the rate of loss of primary unassisted graft patency by 18 percent and the rate of developing significant stenosis by 28 percent, compared to placebo.
Graft patency is the useful life of a graft before it becomes blocked the first time.
"This drug combination provides a modest but important new therapy to keep AV grafts in good working order so patients can get the dialysis they needBut clearly more research is needed to extend the useful life of AV grafts," said Dr.Griffin P. Rodgers, Director National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).
The researchers enrolled 649 participants with new AV grafts were for the five-year long trial at 13 clinical sites in the United States.
All the participants were randomly assigned to treatment with dipyridamole plus aspirin or to a placebo.Our trial results show that we now have a drug therapy that significantly prolongs the viability of AV grafts. This is an important step forward as we proceed to develop therapies to improve dialysis patients' quality of life," said Dr. Bradley S. Dixon, lead author of the study.
The study has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine. (ANI)