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A new type of coronary stent, manufactured in China, has been tested in Cuba and in 94 percent of patients, no vascular complications occurred.

The news was given during the study presented by Dr. Edmundo Jorge López Pérez, First Degree Specialist in Cardiology in the Fifth International Congress on Casualties, Emergencies and Intensive Care, which began this Wednesday and will conclude on Friday with over 300 delegates from fifteen countries.

The stent releases the drug Rapamycin to prevent the narrowing of the artery in which it is implanted and to treat the lesion causing angina pain, tachycardia, shortness of breath and other cardiovascular symptoms.

The study began in January 2006; a first cut was made in August 2008 and continues today. Its main conclusions are summarized as low mortality, need for revascularization of the treated lesion, and narrowing of the placed stent and no heart attacks occurred.

Patients had a high survival compared to with that of international studies. Out of 52 treated patients, only three required another operation.

The stent is a prosthesis (usually a tube of stainless steel mesh), similar in size to the spring of a regular pen (two to four millimeters), to avoid the closure of the artery.

The operation to place it —Percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty— only requires local anesthesia at the puncture spot.

Due to its high cost, the study is being carried out to validate its potential acquisition and generalization in Cuba.

In our country, the first conventional stent — non-drug releaser —was placed by the brothers Lorenzo and Roberto Llerena in the Institute of Cardiology and Cardiovascular Surgery, at the end of the 80s. Nowadays a few thousand implants are performed every year. The drug releaser in question was introduced in CIMEQ by the team of Professor Gaspar Angel Obregón, in May 2004.

Generally, 20 percent of patients who have a conventional stent have to be re-operated on, whereas with the drug releaser, the number is only ten percent.

The Bird of Fire stent is basically implanted in the trunk of the left coronary artery, in its two branches —anterior descending and circumflex— and in the right coronary.

It is widely used in acute myocardial infarction, to save a life, and also in patients with angina pectoris, to lessen the pain.

In this study, only seven percent had to be re-operated on, a world level figure. It reduces mortality, relieves pain, increases the functional capacity of the patient, avoids the need for an open heart operation and decreases the hospital stay.

The process consists of passing a catheter through an artery —femoral, humeral or radial— that once it has reached the heart enters the coronary arteries, dilates the narrowness and the surgeon can observe everything in the angiograph. In general, almost immediately the patient's symptoms changed.

This is the first multicenter study made by the Cuban Interventional Cardiology, carried out by the already mentioned Institute, CIMEQ, and the Hermanos Ameijeiras Hospital. This resource is one of the most important advances in Interventional Cardiology in the past decade in the world.

Source: Juventud Rebelde

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