National Leaders in Chronic Total Occlusion (CTO) Treatment
The interventional cardiology specialists at Torrance Memorial Medical
Center continue to advance the field of cardiovascular care, refining
and improving a procedure to treat coronary artery chronic total occlusion
(CTO) that uses a minimally invasive technique called chronic total occlusion
percutaneous coronary intervention (CTO PCI).
CTO PCI is Revolutionizing the Treatment of CTO Patients
CTO is a type of coronary artery disease caused by a heavy build-up of
plaque in the arteries that carry blood to your heart. CTO can result
in a total or almost complete blockage of a coronary artery, creating
a “wall” that prevents blood from flowing to your heart.
These large blockages are difficult to clear using traditional catheter-based
approaches. In most cases the only effective treatment for CTO has been
coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, or open-heart surgery —
a procedure that has a high risk of complications and requires a long
recovery. Additionally, a significant number of patients with CTO are
considered too high-risk for open heart surgery, leaving them with no
Led by cardiologist Ray Wyman, M.D., the interventional cardiology team
at Torrance Memorial uses a new technique — CTO PCI — to treat
patients with CTO. This procedure makes it possible to treat CTO through
a needle puncture in the skin during a procedure called percutaneous revascularization.
CTO PCI allows patients to avoid CABG and offers new hope to patients
who otherwise would not have qualified for surgery.
What makes CTO PCI such a game changer?
Although physicians have been performing percutaneous revascularization
for years, this procedure has not previously been used to treat CTO. That’s
because CTO blockages tend to be large and difficult to safely clear using
Dr. Wyman is expert in an advanced technique that uses devices to approach
the blockage from the “forward” and “backward”
directions, allowing him to safely clear the artery and place a stent
to hold the artery open. Very few interventional cardiologists are able
to perform this technique, making Torrance Memorial one the few hospitals
to offer this life saving option.
As pioneers in the use of this technique, the interventional cardiology
specialists at Torrance Memorial have established themselves as national
leaders in CTO treatment. Dr. Wyman and his team are now using the latest
two-way communication technology to teach this new technique to cardiologists
around the world.
Saving Lives through Cardiac Research