The inherent catastrophic traps in retrograde CTO PCI.

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When we learn to drive, our driving instructor tells us how to check the side mirror and turn your head to check the blind spot before changing lanes. He tells us how to stop at stop signs, how to drive in slippery conditions, the safe stopping distances, and these all make our driving safe. Similarly, when we learn PCI, our mentors teach us to seat the guiding catheter co-axially, to wire the vessel safely, to deliver balloon and stents over the wire, to watch the pressure of the guiding, in order that we perform PCI safely and evade complications. In retrograde CTO PCI, there is no such published teaching. Also many individual mentors have not had the wide experience to see all the possible complications of retrograde CTO PCI and, therefore, may not be able to warn their apprentice. As the number of retrograde procedures increase worldwide, there is a corresponding increase in catastrophic complications, many of which, we as experts, can see are easily avoidable. To breach this gap in knowledge, this article describes 12 commonly met inherent traps in retrograde CTO PCI. They are inherent because by arranging our equipment in the manner to perform retrograde CTO PCI, these complications are either induced directly or happen easily. We hope this work will enhance safety of retrograde CTO PCI and avoid many catastrophic complications for our readers and operators. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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