Angioplasty

This technique involves the passage of an especially strong balloon catheter into the artery under radiological control, followed by the dilatation of a localised stenosis or the recanalisation of a short occlusion (Figs 15.8 and 15.9). It is most successful in the iliac arteries and least successful

Figure 15.10. Saphenous vein graft and Dacron graft.

below the popliteal. It is not of value in calcified stenoses or those that are asymmetrical (the normal area of wall dilates without compressing the plaque). Longer occlusions may be more successfully treated with subintimal passage of the balloon. Complications include acute thrombosis of the dilated segment, rupture of the artery and peripheral embolisation.

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