Objectives: This study sought to perform a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials comparing device closure with medical therapy in the prevention of recurrent neurological events in patients with cryptogenic stroke and patent foramen ovale.
Background: The optimal strategy for secondary prevention of cryptogenic stroke with a patent foramen ovale is unclear.
Methods: Several databases were searched from their inception to March 2013, which yielded 3 eligible studies. The results were pooled as per the different patient populations defined in the studies:-intention-to-treat, per-protocol, and as-treated cohorts. A generic inverse method was used based on time-to-event outcomes in a fixed-effect model. A supplementary analysis pooled the results from only 2 trials (RESPECT [Randomized Evaluation of Recurrent Stroke Comparing PFO Closure to Established Current Standard of Care Treatment] and PC Trial [Randomized Clinical Trial Comparing the Efficacy of Percutaneous Closure of Patent Foramen Ovale (PFO) With Medical Treatment in Patients With Cryptogenic Embolism]) as a similar device was used in them.
Results: Our meta-analysis yielded effect-estimate hazard ratios of 0.67 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.44 to 1.00, I(2) = 0%) in the intention-to-treat cohort, 0.62 (95% CI: 0.40 to 0.95). I(2) = 0%) in the per-protocol cohort, and 0.61 (95% CI: 0.40 to 0.95, I(2) = 38%) in the as-treated cohort, showing beneficial effects of device closure. The results became more robust with pooled results from RESPECT and the PC Trial: The effect-estimate hazard ratios being 0.54 (95% CI: 0.29 to 1.01, I(2) = 0%), 0.48 (95% CI: 0.24 to 0.94, I(2) = 26%), and 0.42 (95% CI: 0.21 to 0.84, I(2) = 26%) in the intention-to-treat, per-protocol, and as-treated populations, respectively.
Conclusions: Our meta-analysis suggests that PFO closure is beneficial as compared to medical therapy in the prevention of recurrent neurological events. This meta-analysis helps to further strengthen the role of device closure in cryptogenic stroke.
Keywords: CI; HR; OR; PFO; TIA; confidence interval; cryptogenic stroke; device closure; hazard ratio; odds ratio; patent foramen ovale; recurrent stroke; transcatheter closure; transient ischemic attack.
Copyright © 2013 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.