Coronary artery disease (CAD) was reported as the top cause of death in much of the developed world – in Malaysia in 2019, over 16,300 victims made up 15% of medically-certified deaths, according to national statistics, and proper management of CAD depends on the appropriate use of revascularisation techniques – Malaysian patients can now finally opt for a better, safer and more advanced treatment solution with a newly-available diagnostic tool.
Known as Intravascular Ultrasound (IVUS) technology, the tool uses sound waves to generate detailed imaging of the heart blood vessels and provides cross-sectional views of the affected artery. This gives doctors important information on the nature of blockages or compositions within one’s heart; the IVUS technology also ensures practitioners are able to develop the right treatment plans for patients.
“This is a big step forward for cardiology in Malaysia. As doctors, we always want to offer our patients treatment solutions that give them the most promising outcome. To do so, we need to know as much information about the condition as we can,” said Datuk Dr. Tamil Selvan Muthusamy, Consultant Cardiologist at Cardiac Vascular Sentral Kuala Lumpur (CVSKL), Malaysia. Datuk Dr. Tamil Selvan has performed more than 100 IVUS-guided procedures at CVSKL.
IVUS is proven to be more effective in treating CAD: an extensive study involving 1,448 patients with recurring blockages after undergoing stent procedure (also known as target vessel failure or TVF) found that only 6.6% of patients who underwent IVUS-guided procedures had TVF; it is a significantly lower number than the 10.7% patients who did not use IVUS for their procedures.
This data emphasises IVUS’s capabilities to help reduce the chances of TVF by almost half, and stands to improve the long-term results of angioplasty with stent implantation.
“IVUS is an important tool to help doctors achieve better procedural results,” added Datuk Dr. Rosli Mohd Ali, Consultant Cardiologist at CVSKL. Datuk Dr. Rosli has also performed over 100 IVUS-guided procedures in CVSKL.
“With IVUS, doctors can get a clear look of the final stent expansions, reduce the chances of post-procedure complications thus achieving better long-term outcomes as shown innumerous studies. It helps to minimise the need for subsequent interventions. [Most] importantly, we are able to provide higher assurance and confidence to our patients,” Datuk Dr. Rosli said.