Matters of the heart

Published: Monday 15 September 1997

-- a team of doctors at Mumbai's Nanavati hospital have achieved a major breakthrough in the treatment of coronary diseases. They recently inserted radioactive stents (metal stems) in the coronary artery for the first time in Asian medical history. The process involves declogging arterial blocks through radioactive exposure or therapy. Once commercialised the technique could improve the success rate of angioplasty operations. It has so far been tried out on five persons, all of whom have responded well.

The team headed by M J Gandhi, head of the department of cardiology at the hospital worked with the assistance of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in Mumbai. The doctors claim that the process would involve no side effects as the radioactivity confined to a region of around 3-5 mm around the stent, would disappear after a month.

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