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Eagerly Anticipated Heart Procedure Debuts at North Kansas City Hospital

David Otto, Gladstone,
enjoys the simpler things
in life, like yardwork,
after undergoing a new
heart procedure which
proved to be the answer
for his heart blockage.

As soon as the new drug-eluting stent arrived at North Kansas City Hospital, David Otto was ready to be one of the first in Kansas City to receive the recently approved procedure. Only four hospitals in Kansas City were able to provide the procedure during this initial release of the stent. The new stent, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration only days before Otto's procedure, is a new way to open clogged arteries. The tiny metal stent is coated with a drug called sirolimus, which is absorbed through the heart vessel over several weeks after implantation.  Studies show the stent helps eliminate tissue re-growth inside the artery, which can lead to reblockage (restenosis) and potential repeat procedures.

Otto, 64, suffered two heart attacks in 1984 and 2002. Recently his wife, CeCe, noticed he was short of breath and more tired. Tests revealed one of the arteries leading to his heart was over 95 percent blocked. While not for everyone, doctors felt the new procedure would be ideal for Otto because bypass surgery was a high risk due to his past heart damage.

"I am relieved to get the drug-eluting stent since it has a higher success rate at keeping the artery open compared to a regular stent," says Otto.

"This state-of-the art technology may help reduce the need for additional angioplasty procedures or bypass surgery for many patients like David," says W. Kent Barr, MD, North Kansas City Hospital cardiologist, who performed the procedure.

In an angioplasty procedure, a tiny balloon is inflated within an artery to push plaque against the artery wall. When the balloon is deflated, a wire-meshed stent provides a metal framework to keep the artery open. In 15 to 30 percent of the cases, scar-like tissue grows into the stent which may cause the artery to clog again. The new stent will release drugs to help reduce the rate of scar tissue growth and reblockage of the artery.

Otto and his wife are glad he recovered so quickly from the procedure. "This was much less invasive than his previous bypass surgery. Within 23-hours after the procedure, he was up and about," says CeCe Otto. Not only is Otto grateful North Kansas City Hospital had this new technology available so quickly, he also raves about the care he received. "Everyone was so helpful and caring," he says.

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  • Drug-eluting Stent, David Otto