Science Scope

Laser opens blocked arteries

Posting in Technology

Laser technology could be a ground breaking technology to unclog arteries.

Laser blasts can unclog arteries in minutes. It's a new treatment that could help thousands with artery disease.

Researchers at University College Hospital in London tested the treatment on two patients. The patients were discharged the next day. Normally, the patients would spend weeks in the hospital to recover.

So far, the trials at the hospital in London have shown that the laser treatment can reduce hospital stays and operating times.

The Turbo Elite drill is hooked up to a laser called the Excimer. The drill acts as a catheter, so light is transmitted through 30 glass filaments.

The laser shines on tissue and turns them into small particles. Once the tissue build up is broken up, the blood flow goes back to normal. The laser breaks the tissue down so much, it will safely pass through the rest of the body.

The treatment costs as much as stent and is less invasive. Current treatments usually require a small tube or stent to widen the arteries caused by disease. The only way to clear up the new blockage is to perform complex bypass surgery on the patient. The laser treatment would eliminate the need for more surgery.

The procedure has only been used in patients with blocked arteries in their legs or pelvis. The doctors are now wanting to see how the laser might zap away blockages in patients with diabetes.

via Daily Mail

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Boonsri Dickinson

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor Boonsri Dickinson is a freelance journalist based in San Francisco. She has written for Discover, The Huffington Post, Forbes, Nature Biotech, Technewsdaily.com, Techstartups.com and AOL. She's currently a reporter for Business Insider. She holds degrees from the University of Florida and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure