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Treatment of artherosclerosis turned on its head

Africa's medical sector celebrated yet another milestone with the performance of a groundbreaking surgical technique.
Source: Supplied.
Source: Supplied.

"It's exciting to be a pioneer in the medical field," Vinesh Padayachy, the doctor who performed the new surgical method, said.

Known as orbital atherectomy, the surgery sands away calcium or plaque build-up in the artery walls, and does away with the need for stents.

It makes use of an instrument that covers the circumference of the vessel and spins in high velocity in a 360 degree motion creating "a hole through the blockage". Tiny fragments of calcium or plaque then get released into the bloodstream and are then filtered through the system.

Padayachy performed the technique for the first time at Lenmed's eThekwini Hospital and Heart Centre on a 67-year-old woman. She had artherosclerosis in her extremities.

The treatment, which is less expensive and less invasive than putting in stents in artery walls, is set to revolutionise treatment for those suffering from high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes, and ultimately reduces the amount of time patients spend in hospital.

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