Percutaneous excimer laser coronary angioplasty of lesions not ideal for balloon angioplasty.
BACKGROUND Excimer laser coronary angioplasty is a new, investigational technique for treating coronary artery stenoses. Initial reports have demonstrated acute efficacy and relative safety of this procedure, but have not addressed the effect of lesion type on acute success and complication rates.
METHODS AND RESULTS In the first 100 patients undergoing percutaneous excimer laser coronary angioplasty at our institution, acute laser success was obtained in 84% and procedural success was obtained in 94%. There were six acute closures during laser angioplasty and one myocardial infarction. Two patients required emergency coronary bypass surgery. Sixty-five percent of patients had lesions not ideal for balloon angioplasty because of lesion morphology (tubular, diffuse, or chronic total occlusion) or ostial location. There were 10 tubular stenoses, 29 diffuse lesions, 18 chronic total occlusions, and eight ostial lesions, including five aorto-ostial lesions. In this nonideal subgroup, the acute success rate with laser was 86% (72% of chronic total occlusions and 91% of non-totally occluded lesions), and the procedural success rate was 94%. There were three acute occlusions during laser angioplasty but no myocardial infarctions, emergency bypass surgeries, or deaths. One coronary artery perforation occurred without clinical sequelae. Laser angioplasty was successful in four of six lesions (67%) in which balloon angioplasty had failed. Laser success was obtained in 10 of 11 (91%) moderately or heavily calcified stenoses. Eight eccentric lesions and two lesions on bends were successfully treated without dissection or perforation. No side branch occlusions occurred in the 15 patients in whom one or more major branches originated within the lesion treated. Adjunctive balloon angioplasty was performed in 47% of cases, usually to obtain a larger final luminal diameter. Need for adjunctive balloon angioplasty decreased to 36% after a larger (2.0 mm) laser catheter became available. Twenty-eight percent of the 105 lesions treated were American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association classification type A, 47% were type B, and 25% were type C. Laser and procedural successes were obtained in 83% and 97% of type A, 88% and 96% of type B, and 85% and 88% of type C lesions, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS In our initial experience, excimer laser angioplasty was found to be acutely effective and safe therapy for lesions identified as not ideal for balloon angioplasty. This technique may provide a useful adjunct or alternative to balloon angioplasty in selected patients.
- Copyright © 1991 by American Heart Association