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More data needed to determine whether holes in heart lead to stroke

Broad interpretations exist on data related to patent foramen ovales (PFOs) and whether they cause stroke, writes a physician in the May issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Lacking, he says, are good estimates of overall risks or variables that could affect prognosis.

Harold Adams Jr., M.D., from the University of Iowa's Department of Neurology, comments on new studies published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. In an editorial on cardiac disease and stroke, Dr. Adams says articles in the journal serve as a reminder to physicians to exercise caution when a "new" cause of a common disease such as stroke is described.

Additional research will help determine the best course of treatment for patients with PFOs, Dr. Adams says, and will give physicians and patients the necessary data to make educated treatment decisions.


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17-May-2006


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