South Asian coronary artery disease patients were thrice likelier to be readmitted to hospital for further interventional treatment to arterial plaque than their White European counterparts. The new study which led to the conclusion was guided by a scientist of Indian origin.
They were also more likely to present as an emergency and require urgent treatment.
Researchers carried out a five-year follow-up study of 1,158 patients who had received percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) at a UK hospital, comparing 293 South Asians and 865 White Europeans.
The majority of the patients were men and the South Asian patients were of Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan origin.
PCI, which is often known as angioplasty, is carried out to remove the cholesterol-laden plaque that has built up in the arteries leading to the heart, making them narrower and reducing blood flow.
"When we compared the number of further procedures the patients underwent, we found that the South Asian patients were three times as likely to need further procedures than their White European counterparts," said lead author Dr Chetan Varma, from the Department of Cardiology at City Hospital, Birmingham, UK.
"South Asians develop symptomatic coronary artery disease at an earlier age and also have a higher prevalence than White Europeans.
"Despite this, there were no long-term differences in the all-cause death rates between the two ethnic groups," he noted.
The finding appears in the December issue of IJCP, the International Journal of Clinical Practice.