A heart attack is a growing global problem and one of the most common causes of death. Over the past few decades, the treatment of this deadly ailment has evolved a lot. Presently, the mode of treatment which has revolutionized healthcare throughout the world by dramatically curtailing the risk of death and suffering is Primary Coronary Angioplasty.
By this method, the sudden blockage in the coronary arteries which are responsible for the heart attack, are removed mechanically with wires and balloons inserted into the coronary arteries through a needle prick over the skin. To prevent a recurrence, a metallic scaffold, popularly known as stents, often with drug coating, are put inside the coronary arteries. Sometimes, the clots inside the arteries are also removed by mechanical aspiration devices. All these are done under local anaesthesia with the patient himself/herself witnessing the whole procedure and experiencing the dramatic relief of severe agonizing pain. Previously, all of these procedures were done through the groin. But nowadays, in experienced centres, it’s done through the wrist, making it more comfortable for the patient with a much lesser chance of bleeding and other major complications. This helps in early ambulation, so much so that patients may be found dischargeable as early as 48-72 hours of a major, potentially fatal heart attack.
All these advantages have made Primary Coronary Angioplasty as the standard of care for this killer disease all over the world. All international guidelines recommended it to be performed in every case of heart attack, to save lives and reduce suffering.