Researchers have found a new blood test that could provide a clue as to why some patients are at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease risk after suffering a heart attack.
The results showed novel therapies targeting fibrin clot lysis time may improve prognosis in patients with the acute coronary syndrome.
"Our findings provide exciting clues as to why some patients are at higher risk after a heart attack and how we might address this with new treatments in the future," said co-author of the study Rob Storey, the professor from the University of Sheffield, UK.
For the study, published in European Heart Journal, researchers analysed blood plasma samples from more than 4,300 patients with acute coronary syndrome as they were discharged from the hospital.
They measured the maximum density of a clot and the time it took for the clot to break down -- known as clot lysis time.
After adjustment for known clinical characteristics and risk factors, the study found that the patients with the longest clot lysis time had a 40 percent increased risk of recurrent myocardial infarction or death due to cardiovascular disease.
According to the researchers, this research may help them to identify new targets for reducing the risk and eventually lead to more effective treatments.
"We now need to press ahead with exploring possibilities for tailoring treatment to an individual's risk following a heart attack and testing whether drugs that improve clot lysis time can reduce this risk," Storey added.