A Study of the Radiological Use of Laser Angioplasty in Britain

Mark, N.J., Augousti, A.T. and Belli, A.-M. (1996) A Study of the Radiological Use of Laser Angioplasty in Britain. Lasers in Medical Science, 11(2), pp. 79-95. ISSN (print) 0268-8921


Laser recanalization was introduced and developed in Britain in the 1980s in an attempt to deal with the limitations associated with the conventional technique of percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA). Since then, the use of this technique has decreased. This paper reports the findings of a comprehensive literature survey and interviews with a representative sample of British interventional radiologists on the reasons for this decline, and suggests the likely future direction for this technology. It has been determined that the main reasons for the decline are improvements in conventional guidewire and catheter technology, the high cost of the laser system, and the lack of evidence of any improvement in results compared with conventional PTA. However, despite current disenchantment, the majority of radiologists questioned felt that lasers could have a future role to play and that development of these systems should continue.

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