KOCHI: For the first time in Kerala, calcium deposits that blocked the blood vessels in a patient's leg were removed using an advanced technology called Intravascular lithotripsy (IVL).
The procedure was conducted for a 75-year-old patient who was hospitalized with uncontrolled diabetes with a non-healing ulcer, at VPS Lakeshore Hospital here. The treatment procedures were led by Dr. Cibi Issac and Dr. Anand Kumar V, senior consultants in the Dept of Cardiology at the hospital.
When the patient was hospitalised two weeks back, he was also suffering from severe pain in his right leg. "Doppler study of the leg showed decreased blood flow to the leg which was confirmed by an angiogram. The main blood vessel to the leg was totally occluded and there was heavy calcification in the stenosed area," a release by the hospital said. Unfortunately, usual angioplasty balloons could not open the vessel due to calcification, it said.
Hence, the doctors used the new technology called Intravascular lithotripsy (for breaking the calcium in this patient which was done for the first time in a leg blood vessel in Kerala. The IVL procedure makes use of a special balloon that can emit sound waves to the blocked area and this sonic energy can break the calcium. Finally, the procedure was completed by implanting stents which resulted in good blood flow. The patient had relief of pain in the leg and his ulcer is healing slowly now.
Dr. Cibi Issac, who led the treatment, said the advantage of this technology is that it can be done through a pinhole made in the groin under local anesthesia with minimal complications. "We can hope that more and more patients will benefit from this technology in the future," he said.