Innovative drug eluting angioplasty comes to Hollywood Private Hospital
Jan 20, 2014
A newly approved minimally invasive procedure for treating patients with the debilitating and potentially limb-threatening condition known as Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) is now available at Hollywood Private Hospital.
The technology, known as Drug Eluting Balloon (DEB) angioplasty, utilises balloons coated with a precise dose of a pharmaceutical agent that is delivered to the wall of the artery. This dilates a narrowed artery and delivers, to the artery wall, a drug that significantly reduces the scarring that can result from standard angioplasty or stenting and cause restenosis, or re-narrowing of arteries, over time.
This process of scarring – called neo-intimal hyperplasia – is the most common cause of recurrent symptoms, repeat angiogram procedures and treatment complications.
DEB technology is particularly revolutionary because it addresses the challenge of restenosis, which is the 'achilles heel' of standard angioplasty and stent treatments.
"Drug eluting balloons, while not replacing existing treatment techniques, are an invaluable and much-awaited addition to our treatment repertoire," said Dr Stefan Ponosh, Vascular and Endovascular Surgeon at Hollywood.
"They have certainly changed how endovascular surgeons treat re-narrowing of arteries and have resulted in significant benefits to patients by reducing potential repeat procedures and prolonging the benefits of current treatments.
"While initially only using this technology for restenosis, it is now becoming a first-line treatment, which is very exciting and is showing exceptionally promising results."
DEB has been trialled at Hollywood, and has been formally approved by Australia's Therapeutic Goods Administration.
Perth resident Christine Murray had three previous arterial stenting procedures, all of which unfortunately developed re-narrowing within months, associated with the return of her debilitating leg pain. More than 12 months ago, she underwent a DEB angioplasty at Hollywood with Dr Ponosh.
"I am thrilled," said Ms Murray. "It's the first time in years that I have not had to deal with this problem. Before the first stent, I could never walk more than about 50 metres without getting severe pain in my calf.
"Every time I had a stent inserted, my symptoms returned very soon afterwards as the stents re-narrowed. However, since Dr Ponosh did the special angioplasty procedure, I haven't experienced any problems and I am back either playing golf or walking every day."
The innovative DEB technology not only improves the quality of life of patients with PAD by restoring mobility, but can also save limbs in those with more severe disease. Apart from this benefit, reducing potential future procedures associated with restenosis both reduces potential procedural complications and saves the Australian health system significant costs.
In Australians aged 40 and older, it is estimated that approximately 475,000 have PAD. About 2,500 Australians die of PAD each year and there are more than 24,000 hospital admissions. It is conservatively estimated that 300,000 Australians could benefit from access to the technology.
Peter Mott, Hollywood Private Hospital CEO, said that the approval of DEB technology contributes to the Hospital's expertise in cardiovascular and endovascular surgery.
"Hollywood already has significant infrastructure and expertise in vascular and endovascular medicine," said Mr Mott. "Our state-of-the-art angiosuite, which allows for exceptionally high-quality diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, is one of the most advanced in the State.
About Hollywood Private Hospital:
Hollywood Private Hospital is a modern, 660 bed, state-of-the-art acute care hospital in Nedlands. The hospital is a part of Ramsay Health Care Group – Australia's largest private hospital operator and has over 830 accredited specialist doctors across a wide range of specialty areas including orthopaedics, urology, cardiology, gastroenterology, oncology, psychiatry, rehabilitation, general and plastic surgery and general medicine