Renal artery stenting plus medical treatment is no better than medical treatment alone at preventing progression of renal impairment in patients with atherosclerotic renal artery stenosis (ARAS), investigators reported in Annals of Internal Medicine (2009;150:840-848).

The finding emerged from a study of 140 patients with a creatinine clearance less than 80 mL/min and ARAS of 50% or greater. Liesbeth Bax, MD, PhD, of the University Medical Center Utrecht in Utrecht, the Netherlands, and collaborators randomly assigned 64 patients to receive stent placement and medical treatment and 76 patients to receive medical treatment alone.

Ten patients in the stent group (16%) and 16 in the medical treatment-only group (22%) reached the primary end point of a 20% or greater decrease in creatinine clearance, a nonsignificant difference between the groups. In addition, the stent group experienced serious complications, including two procedure-related deaths.

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