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On 30th Anniversary, Angioplasty Celebrated as Modern Medical Breakthrough in Stopping Heart Attack
Date:9/13/2007

collapsed

after balloon-catheter treatment were a major obstacle and a source of

poor outcomes in early angioplasty. Stents overcame this problem by

propping the artery open and restoring normal blood flow. This

innovation led to dramatically improved patient outcomes; and

-- The drug-eluting or coated stent, first approved in the U.S. in 2003

and designed to release medication over time to interrupt the biologic

processes that cause tissue growth and re-narrowing inside the stent

in some patients. Drug-eluting stents have reduced the incidence of

tissue build-up from 40 percent in the early days of stents to just

five to seven percent today.

Studies have found drug-eluting stents pose a small increase in the risk of blood clotting in the stent a year or more after it is inserted. Interventional cardiologists continue to innovate and are now working to find the causes of "late stent thrombosis" and a solution for this rare event. Already, new studies show that it is reduced when cardiologists improve both technique and patient selection and when patients better adhere to recommended drug regimens. Meanwhile, some researchers believe the promise of a solution may lie in dissolvable stent coatings or bio-absorbable stents.

Looking ahead, angioplasty's catheter-based procedures and tools offer exciting potential for treating other serious health issues effectively -- and less invasively. One of the most exciting areas of development is the treatment of diseased carotid arteries, the vessels that supply blood to the brain, to stop or prevent stroke. Catheter-based procedures are also being used to treat renal arteries that supply blood to the kidneys and arteries that provide oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood to the legs and feet. Even newer devices are being delivered via catheter to close a small, naturally occurring hole between the upper left and right chambers
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SOURCE The Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and
Interventions
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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