A new procedure to treat calcified heart arteries using sonic pressure waves has been performed at Kettering General Hospital for the first time.
Consultant interventional cardiologist Dr Prashanth Raju, assisted by cardiology registrar Dr Abdelmunam Tumy, performed the Shockwave Coronary Intravascular Lithotripsy on Wellingborough man Jack Hadley earlier this month.
The procedure is only performed at few major heart hospitals in the UK and worldwide currently and is probably the first one to be done in the East Midlands region.
85-year-old grandfather Jack was the first KGH patient to benefit from the procedure.
The father-of-three had a severely calcified artery which had resulted in a heart attack on November 8 - followed by an eight day stay in hospital.
Following tests, on November 16, Mr Hadley had the new procedure and within half an hour was recovering in the Cardiac Centre.
Mr Hadley’s son, Laurence, from Stanion, said: “Tests had showed that dad had one artery that was blocked and another almost blocked.
“On November 8 he had a heart attack and was rushed to hospital.
“This new procedure was discussed with us and we decided to try it.
“It has worked amazing well and quickly cleared the artery.
“I couldn’t fault the care that dad has received and we want to thank the team involved.”
Dr Raju said: “This is a very exciting new procedure that will offer a safer alternative approach in treating calcified heart arteries.
“Currently, in these cases, a drill is being used to clear the calcium deposits, which is a higher risk procedure with potential complications including perforation of the artery.
“The new approach uses a balloon emitting a small electrical discharge, which creates sonic pressure waves.
“These waves safely clear calcium deposits, making further treatment with balloons and stents easier.
“In our first case, we used two cycles (ten bursts per cycle) of sonic pressure waves.
“This took less than 30 seconds in cracking the hard calcium.
“This allowed us to prepare the lesion and deploy appropriate sized stent quickly. It yielded a very good result.
“Overall, the procedure is safer, shorter and benefits patients by reducing symptoms such as breathlessness and improving their quality of life.”