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Medtech Impact on Wellness

Abbott Divisional Vice President of Vascular Clinical Development, Dr. Richard Rapoza, tells listeners about a newer technology for vascular health: optical coherence tomography (OCT).

He discusses the advantages of this approach, explaining

  • How optical coherence tomography provides more information than traditional heart angiography,
  • Why it can also work in concert with a angiography stent to preclude guess work and other angiography risks, and
  • How current studies comparing optical coherence tomography with traditional heart angiography are progressing.

Abbott is a medical technology company dedicated to producing life-saving and quality-of-life technologies and Dr. Rapoza is working to raise awareness of what optical coherence tomography can offer the health field. He describes it as an instrument that shoots infrared lasers into a patient’s arterial system and takes spiral pictures of the arterial wall. It provides great detail of the arterial composition and takes measurements. Finally, it offers a good picture of how to treat the patient.

He provides a few examples, explaining how a doctor can use it to see what the cost of a heart attack is—and can also clear and see behind the clot as well as find the spot that ruptured and caused the clot and repair it. The more common way of treating vessels through a heart angiography is where technicians use an x-ray with injectable dye: this only provides a two-dimensional view. So physicians take a guess at the diameter and length before they introduce an angiography stent, for example.

Dr. Rapoza explains this along with other angiography risks and describes how OTC can work alongside a traditional stent to produce better results. He also describes additional advancements in this technology such as ways to address problems of blood flow in the feet from diabetic damage as well as other promising uses.

For more, see Abbott’s website as well as a press release describing their findings.

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