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December 25, 1991

Antistenosis Approaches Revisited, or Rating the Artery Openers Anew

JAMA. 1991;266(24):3397-3398. doi:10.1001/jama.1991.03470240019004

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


CLEARING OUT the recurrent underbrush of fatty debris in the arterial jungle is the goal of cardiologic explorers today.

Despite the nearly routine restoration of blood flow through once-clogged coronary vessels that "balloon angioplasty" makes possible, restenosis continues to be a problem. Following attack by blasting, cutting, scraping, melting, and other efforts, the plaque comes back.

At the 64th annual Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association (AHA), held in Anaheim, Calif, many presentations dealt with the safety and efficacy of alternative devices designed during the past few years to remove fatty deposits or prop open arterial walls after percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA).

Sometimes the new methods are tried first. In either case, success has not been great.

Experimental Now, Clinical in '92?  The major devices include specialized balloon and laser catheters, mechanical atherectomy or ablation devices, and metallic and bioabsorbable stents. With one exception (the Atherocath, which has