Cilostazol could cut repeat stroke rate

Using cilostazol, rather than aspirin, to prevent repeat stroke is associated with fewer bleeding events and may be more effective, a study has found.

Japanese researchers used a noninferiority study to examine whether cilostazol was at least as good as aspirin at preventing secondary stroke. They gave 2,757 cerebral infarction patients either 100mg cilostazol twice daily or 81mg of aspirin daily.

Over 29 months, the yearly rate of cerebral infarction, celebral haemorrhage or subarachnoid haemorrhage, was 26% lower with cilostazol than with aspirin.

In addition, the number of patients who suffered a major bleeding event was 54% lower among patients given cilostazol.

In an editorial published alongside the study in The Lancet, Dr Deepak Bhatt and Dr Dharam Kumbhani from Harvard Medical School, Boston, said the results were interesting and warranted further investigation.

But they pointed out that the study included only east Asian patients and only patients with non-severe strokes, so the results might not be generalisable.

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