A chronic total occlusion or coronary CTO is a complete blockage in a coronary artery.
When one or more of the coronary arteries suddenly becomes completely blocked, a heart attack can occur. If the blockage occurs more slowly, the heart muscle may develop small collateral blood vessels for other coronary arteries to reroute the blood flow, causing angina.
At Deborah Heart and Lung Center, each patient is evaluated to see what treatment options is best, based on the type of cardiovascular disease, the location of disease, patient’s age and co-existing medical conditions.
Most patients with a symptomatic coronary total occlusion traditionally required coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery to treat the blockage. Total blockages of the coronary artery have historically been the most challenging types of blockages to treat with an interventional procedure.
However, the emergence of new technology and new percutaneous techniques to treat coronary total occlusions allow experienced interventionists to considerably improve the success rate of this treatment approach, making it an ideal treatment option for patients who are experiencing symptoms related to these blockages.
Deborah patients benefit from this minimally-invasive technique which serves as an alternative to traditional open-heart bypass surgery.