Posts Tagged ‘oat trial’

The  OAT   extension study  ,   a  6 year follow-up study on total occlusion following STEMI has just out in circulation 2011  October , online first . http://circ.ahajournals.org

There were two  important conclusions  from this study

  1. Long term follow-up  to  6 years  confirmed  the  lack of benefit of routine PCI  in  post MI total occlusions.
  2. Inappropriately   done  PCIs convert   stable coronary occlusive  disease into potentially dangerous subsets  with  risk of re-occlusion (Which  could  very well be an acute coronary syndrome )

The second one is  of critical  important than the first  .In a nut shell ,  it  suggests  routine PCI in  CTOs  could  increase the   risk of ACS many fold in other wise stable patients.

Final message

This OAT extension study  should  not experience the same fate  of  COURAGE and OAT -1  which  were  successful bitten and buried  by most  interventional cardiologists.

This time they   have to  swallow  the  unpalatable truth ! If they don’t ,  our  patients  would be the ultimate  losers and

will pay the  price dearly !

Personal foot note :

One of my colleague asked me  . . . Why am I  always  after the Interventional   cardiology  community !

I said ,  it is not my job to pull down any one group.  I am just exposing   the  irony of  “selective usage” or “selective  neglect”   of scientific  data by many of us !

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We  are at the mercy  of  the three major coronary arteries (LAD,LCX,RCA) that sustain our life . Their  job is clear cut  .It has to perfuse   about 300 Grams of   live bundle of energy  for  an average of 6-7 decades.

What are the hurdles it  faces ,  how it overcomes these obstacles  forms the fascinating story of   “survival  of  human heart”

When coronary blood supply is confronted with a sudden compromise  as in ACS  ,  often the heart has little  time to respond . Hence the damage  and risk of death is  more. Even here there are lots of safety mechanisms and natural lytic process that limit the loss of life to less than 30 %  of all STEMIs. This implies nature protects against the death in 70 % of individuals and help  them  to reach hospital.*

*Among those  who reach hospital , we  the cardiologists  try to reduce the  mortality to about 6-7 % (20% without treatment ) with all  those hi-tech gadgets .It is a  different story and will be addressed elsewhere .

When it comes to  chronic insults ,  the heart has a unique potential to  stage  long haul battles. It has many tricks  under its  sleeves when challenged in a slow fashion.

The main weapons are two

1. Coronary collateral circulation.

2. Ischemic preconditioning.

Here is a patient who fights his life even after all his  three coronary arteries   totally blocked and surviving with one of the branches of left main -Ramus intermedius .

If you have thought his RCA was the savior  you are  mistaken  .

To every one’s   surprise  his  RCA was awful  as well !

He had angina which was  troublesome  but manageable .Was able to live a life with acceptable standards (Indian standard )  After the angiogram he  received  CABG.  A turbulent post operative course ensued  due to various reasons . He  struggled but   fully recovered  . . .  and  ultimately  reached the  previous  standard  of life !

Final message

Modern cardiology is all about not trusting  powers of nature .

But youngsters should realise the enormous potential of those invisible powers.It may sound philosophical , but please  remember  . . .after all . . .  philosophy  is nothing but  search for truths. Atleast believe in them  once in a while !

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