Drug Eluted Balloons & Stents to treat Blocked Arteries

Peripheral arterial disease (P.A.D.) is a disorder in which plaque builds up in the arteries that carry blood to your organs. Plaque hardens and narrows the arteries limiting the flow of oxygen-rich blood to our organs and other parts of the body.

However, recently, drug eluting balloons and stents in opening blocked arteries in heart patients are now being employed. The doctors say that this will help in preventing the chances of re-blockage due to fat deposition.

The peripheral arteries are small in size (2-3 mm diameter) which often results in re-blockage after conventional ballooning. “Use of drug eluting balloons has been shown to keep the vessels open for a longer period. These balloons are coated with a special drug. When they are inflated, the drug elutes or washes the cells lining the arteries. Hence, the arteries remain open for a longer time,” Dr. Kumud Rai, director, vascular surgery at Max Super Specialty Hospital in Saket.

Recently, the hospital conducted a successful angioplasty using drug eluting balloons to save the leg of a manual labor, Najir Chand (47), suffering from blockage in three arteries of his leg.

“Chand underwent successful ballooning on July 8 when two of his leg arteries were opened. The blood circulation to his foot has improved now, and the wound is showing signs of healing with growth of pink healing tissue,” said Dr. Kumud Rai. If the procedures had not been performed, there were chances the patient would have required a below-knee amputation.

During normal ballooning, there is always a fear of body cell destruction due to pressure. It may results in recovering overgrowth of cells lining the blood vessel. Drug-coated balloons prevent this sudden overgrowth of cells. The drugs such as Paclitaxel prevent the manifold of cells. Drug eluting balloons come as a big hope for diabetics who often suffer from blockage of vessels in the legs. It happens due to the excess deposition of fat on artery walls.

PAD is caused by the coagulation of the arteries. As a result, the leg muscles cannot get enough blood and enough oxygen during exercise and walks. Angioplasty is required in several cases.

“Heart patients, diabetics, and those suffering from high blood pressure or stroke are at higher risk of getting PAD. The symptoms can be curbed with exercise, dietary changes and blood pressure control,” said by Dr. Rai

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