JN senior consultant cardiologist Datuk Dr Amin Ariff Nuruddin and the hospital medical staff perform the first intravascular lithotripsy treatment to treat clogged arteries. ― Picture courtesy of IJN

IJN turns to sound wave technology to clear clogged arteries
Dr Amin Ariff Nuruddin (second from right) with other IJN specialists and staff.

PETALING JAYA: The National Heart Institute (IJN) has introduced a new method using sound waves to clear clogged arteries. IJN says the method is safer than using angioplasty and stent placement.

IJN said it had successfully treated a patient today using the new method, known as intravascular lithotripsy, to treat those suffering from severe atherosclerosis, a condition where deposits of plaque on artery walls narrows the arteries and limits blood flow.

The method uses a catheter with a balloon attached, from which sonic pressure waves emate, breaking down hard calcified plaque accumulated in the arteries.

Serious blockages are more commonly treated using angioplasty and stent placement.

IJN senior consultant cardiologist Dr Amin Ariff Nuruddin said that in the past doctors have had to surgically remove hardened plaque or even perform a graft bypass to ensure good blood flow.

The new method offers “a minimally-invasive treatment option that lessens the risks of surgery for these patients”, he said. It also reduces trauma to the tissue and reduces the risk of complications.

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