Coronary Percutaneous Transluminal Angioplasty

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Last summer the popular news media, ever eager for a “breakthrough,” gave a good bit of space and time to a new approach to the treatment of coronary heart disease, coronary percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (1–3). In this technique a guiding catheter introduced via the femoral artery is positioned in the orifice of the right or left main coronary artery. A very small caliber balloon-tipped catheter is then passed through the guiding catheter and, if possible, advanced through a coronary stenosis so that the balloon is positioned within the lesion (which cannot be done when the stenosis is most critical, for

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