Interventional cardiology has made significant advancements in recent years, providing non-invasive treatment options for cardiovascular diseases. These advancements have greatly benefited patients, reducing the need for traditional surgical procedures and allowing for faster recovery times.
In the expert opinion of Dr. Prashant Dwivedi, Associate Director of Structural Heart and TAVR at the Department of Cardiology at EHCC Hospital, these advancements in interventional cardiology have expanded treatment options and improved outcomes for patients, allowing for faster recovery, reduced complications, and improved quality of life. Ongoing research and development in this field holds promise for further advancements and innovations in the future, leading to predictable outcomes and fewer complications. Advancements include:
Drug Eluting Stents: These stents are coated with special drugs that help prevent further blockages in the arteries after balloon angioplasty. They are effective in keeping the arteries open and improving blood flow.
Coronary Imaging Modalities: Different imaging modalities, such as optical coherence tomography (OCT) and intravascular ultrasound (IVUS), provide detailed images of the coronary arteries. These images help healthcare providers optimize the angioplasty procedure and achieve the best outcomes.
Plaque Modification Techniques: Various techniques are used to treat blockages caused by plaque buildup in the arteries. These techniques include balloon angioplasty, atherectomy (using a rotating blade or laser to remove plaque), thrombectomy (removal of blood clots), cutting balloon angioplasty (scoring the plaque), and laser angioplasty (vaporizing calcified plaque).
Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR): TAVR is a minimally invasive procedure used to replace a diseased aortic valve with a prosthetic valve. It is an alternative to open-heart surgery, particularly suitable for elderly or high-risk patients.
Transcatheter Valve Replacement for Other Valves: Recent advancements have also enabled transcatheter techniques for replacing other heart valves, including the mitral, pulmonary, and tricuspid valves. This provides minimally invasive options for patients who were previously deemed unfit for open-heart surgery.
MitraClip: This non-surgical treatment involves using a catheter to insert a clip that joins the leaflets of the mitral valve together. It helps reduce mitral valve regurgitation, improving heart function.
Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffolds (BVS): Unlike traditional stents, BVS dissolves over time, allowing the vessel to regain its natural flexibility. This reduces the risk of future complications, such as restenosis.
Fractional Flow Reserve (FFR): FFR is a technique that measures the pressure difference across a coronary artery narrowing. It helps determine whether the narrowing is significant enough to require intervention, thus reducing unnecessary procedures.
Device Closure: Some congenital heart defects, such as holes in the heart, can be closed without open-heart surgery. Special devices are used to close these holes in a minimally invasive manner.
Left Atrial Appendage Closure (LAAC): LAAC is a procedure that closes off the left atrial appendage, reducing the risk of stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation.
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