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KDMC Introduces “Cool” Laser to Treat Diseased Arteries

CLiR Path Detail ASHLAND, KY  — The King’s Daughters Heart and Vascular Center is offering an innovative new treatment option for patients suffering from peripheral arterial disease, a cardiovascular condition that restricts blood flow in the legs, and sometimes the arms.

The Spectranetics TURBO Booster® laser ablation system delivers cool ultraviolet (UV) energy that vaporizes blockages in the arteries into tiny particles that are easily absorbed into the blood stream. The UV energy is transmitted along flexible glass fibers encased in catheters, which can be passed through arteries and veins. By restoring blood flow, limbs can be saved, and patients’ overall well-being can be improved.

For many patients, laser ablation is an excellent alternative to femoral bypass, an open surgical procedure that requires a long recovery. The laser ablation procedure is completed within one to two hours with only minutes of laser use, followed by one to two days of recovery. Patients experience very little, if any, discomfort during this procedure.

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) occurs when plaque, thrombus or calcium builds up along artery walls. Diabetes and tobacco use are powerful risk factors for PAD, a condition that affects nearly eight million Americans. Individuals with PAD face increased risk of limb amputation, as well as heart disease, aortic aneurysms and stroke.

“In clinical studies, the TURBO Booster procedure results in a 95 percent limb salvage rate in critical patients,” says Ed Martinez, M.D., KDMC vascular surgeon. “This new laser is unlike any other interventional method available. It is quick and effective. Patients are typically back on their feet and pain-free in two days.”

Dr. Martinez, along with fellow vascular surgeons Alex Hou, M.D., and Omran Abul-Khoudoud, M.D., are treating patients with the TURBO Booster system. In addition, KDMC electrophysiologists John Van Deren, M.D., and Terence Ross, M.D., are using the laser device to remove infected, defective or abandoned cardiac lead wires from patients with pacemakers or implantable cardiac defibrillators, or ICDs, which are electronic devices that regulate the heartbeat.

“The removal of chronically implanted leads is a major technical challenge because of the extensive scars that can develop along the course of the leads over time,” Dr. Ross says. “The laser system consists of two complementary devices that work together to burn away the scar tissue that holds the problematic pacemaker and ICD in place.”

In clinical trials, physicians using the TURBO Booster system for pacemaker lead extraction reported 50 percent faster procedure times and a 98 percent success rate.

To learn more about KDMC’s Heart and Vascular Center, call 1-888-377-KDMC or visit KDMC Heart and Vascular Center.

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