Harvard Heart Letter

Is angioplasty right for you?

Survey finds you may not have been told about other options.

When fatty plaques threaten to obstruct the coronary arteries, three treatment options are available: medications to control symptoms; a procedure to open the blockages with a balloon (angioplasty), usually followed by the placement of a stent, a cylindrical metal scaffold that holds the vessel open; or surgery to bypass the blockages (coronary artery bypass grafting, or CABG). Each treatment has benefits and risks, and may be more appropriate for some individuals than for others.

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