Physician Views Results: More cautious approach to paclitaxel devices for PAD, post-JAHA paper


The findings in a recent meta-analysis by Greek researchers suggesting a higher long-term mortality risk in peripheral arterial disease (PAD) patients treated with paclitaxel-coated devices have given physicians snap-polled by FirstWord MedTech enough cause for concern that over half are now prescribing fewer of these products in their daily practice and nearly a quarter - 22 percent - have stopped using the devices altogether.


Katsanos et al’s paper, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association in December last year, led to two large-scale paclitaxel trials (BASIL-3 and SWEDEPAD) being temporarily suspended. The US FDA issued a notice last month to say it has conducting its own evaluation of the long-term risk data.


We wanted to assess the fallout of the findings on daily clinical practice and see which paclitaxel-coated devices that were being used by physicians to treat PAD might be affected. In total, 81 cardiologists in the US and EU5 countries took part in our snap-poll; 31 physicians were based in the US and the remainder came from Germany, France, the UK, Spain and Italy.


Here are the results of the snap-poll:



The majority of physicians polled - 78 percent - have treated about a quarter or more of their PAD patients with paclitaxel-coated balloons or stents in the past year.




Nearly half of poll respondents say they prescribe both paclitaxel-coated balloons and stents in roughly equal measures.


Among respondents who show a preference for either balloons or stents, more say they use mainly paclitaxel stents (30 percent of total respondents) versus mainly paclitaxel balloons (17 percent of total respondents). This trend is reflected when looking at just US physicians and at EU5 physicians.




Katsanos et al’s findings of increased long term mortality risk linked to paclitaxel-coated devices have given cause for concern to the vast majority of respondents.


Only 16 percent of respondents indicated they were not too perturbed (rating 1 or 2 in terms of level of concern) by the JAHA paper.




Over half of respondents say they are prescribing paclitaxel-coated devices to fewer patients, since the publication of the JAHA paper and the notice issued by the US FDA.




Medtronic’s IN.PACT family of paclitaxel-coated balloons is the most widely used among the respondents.


The biggest proportion of respondents - 41 percent - said they used Medtronic’s IN.PACT paclitaxel-coated balloons the most frequently in their practice. Boston Scientific’s Eluvia paclitaxel-eluting stent, which was recently approved in the US in September last year and is expected to be a significant sales growth driver for the company, was the second most popular (19 percent) followed by another Boston Scientific product, Ranger (16 percent).




Download the full results here.

As always, FirstWord would very much like to receive your feedback and suggestions. You can contact us at

Note: FirstWord Polls are powered by MedePolls, a fast-turnaround service to conduct instant polls of up to five questions with guaranteed samples that include physicians from dozens of specialities and over 100 markets (for further information click here).

Disclaimer: FirstWord follows market research best practices in conducting its Physician Views polls.  However, Physician Views results should be considered directional and clients should use their market research resources for statistical analysis and conclusions required with very high confidence levels.

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