The Japanese method of doing coronary angioplasty for cardiac patients has been introduced in Meenakshi Mission Hospital and Research Centre (MMHRC) here.

A 55-year-old male patient from Ramanathapuram, who suffered chest pain, had successfully undergone a four-hour ‘retrograde angioplasty,’ which is widely followed in Japan.

The hospital also introduced a bio-vascular scaffold by replacing the conventional metal stent implanted in the patient’s artery.

At a press conference held here on Tuesday, three interventional cardiologists - Dr.R.Sivakumar, Dr.S.Selvamani and Dr.N.Ganesan - who led the medical team in introducing the Japanese technique last month, explained the surgery.

“The angiogram of this particular patient showed chronic total occlusions. Conventionally, if the artery is occluded, it is opened from the front and stent will be placed. However, in the Japanese method , the artery was opened from behind through a feeder vessel and the procedure was done,” Dr.Sivakumar said.

Explaining the advantages of the retrograde angioplasty, he said this procedure will increase the success rate of angioplasty as the use of intra-coronary ultrasound imaging helped in better placement of the stent. But, it required a high level of expertise, micro catheters, intra-coronary ultrasound and dedicated wires. A team of experts from Japan was present when the first retrograde technique was done at the MMHRC.

Dr.Selvamani said bio-vascular scaffold, made of medical plastic, got absorbed in two years. “It was introduced here in April and 150 scaffolds had been placed by our experts at Department of Interventional Cardiology,” he added.

Dr.Sivakumar said that even though the bio-vascular scaffold cost more than the conventional procedure, it had an advantage of bringing down the risk factor for the patient at a later stage.

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