If you suffer from atherosclerosis, our endovascular surgeons offer a very safe and effective procedure called an atherectomy to eliminate the build-up of plaque in your arteries.
You may need this procedure if your arteries become too narrowed or blocked from plaque inside the artery walls. When arteries are blocked, blood cannot get through to nourish the tissues, causing the muscles of the lower extremities to cramp and lose strength.
Atherectomy has been very effective in the treatment of peripheral artery disease (PAD) below the knee and it helps to reduce pain caused by walking to heal non-healing wounds by improving circulation. It also has been an effective treatment for limb salvage of the lower extremities. Atherectomy is especially helpful for treating blockages in arteries that occur around branches or in vessels that are not easily treated with stents.
The procedure is done in our office, as opposed to a hospital setting, in one of our state-of-the art endovascular suites. Local anesthesia is used with a mild sedative if needed. During the procedure a catheter is inserted into the artery through a small puncture in the groin. The catheter has a tiny sharp blade on the end which spins around at a very fast speed and sands away the plaque from the blood vessel to open the vessel and re-establish better blood flow. The plaque is scraped away and collected in a chamber in the tip of the catheter for removal. If you have a significant amount of plaque, the catheter can be passed multiple times in order to remove large amounts of plaque.
Depending on the amount of plaque build-up a patient has, the procedure usually takes about two hours. Atherectomy most often results in immediate relief of the symptoms of atherosclerosis. There are typically no side effects and patients can usually begin normal activities several days after the procedure.
This procedure is not ideal for everyone. Each patient is evaluated, and treatment will be individualized for the patient's circumstances.
To find out if you are a candidate for this procedure contact our office for a consultation.