Most Popular Angioplasty Web Site
    Radial Center on Angioplasty.Org Radial Center on Angioplasty.Org with support from Medtronic Cardiovascular
New Radial Angioplasty Course Set for St. Vincent's Hospital in New York

May 10, 2008 -- New York -- Following up on his April course, Dr. John T. Coppola, Chairman of Cardiology at St. Vincent's Hospital in Manhattan, will be presenting a two-day hands-on training course for cardiologists on the clinical, didactic and practical aspects of Transradial Access. The course will be held on June 12-13, 2008 at St. Vincent's Hospital in Greenwich Village, New York. An online brochure and registration information can be found at

The transradial angioplasty technique, where catheters are introduced through the wrist artery, is used widely in Europe, India and Japan, but has not been utilized much in the United States, even though many of the complications seen in the femoral (leg/groin) catheter access approach are significantly lower.

Part of the reason why the radial procedure is not used as much in the U.S. has to do with the training process for cardiologists. According to Dr. Kirk Garratt of the Lenox Hill Heart and Vascular Institute of New York, "Despite the benefits of transradial access, most fellowship training programs continue to train clinical and interventional cardiologists using a transfemoral technique. That perpetuates the practice."

John T. Coppola in the Cath Lab
Dr. Coppola in the Cath Lab

Live demonstration courses are part of an educational process. The St. Vincent's program will offer physicians didactic training, including tips and tricks, equipment usage, pharmacology, and patient, physician and hospital benefits. In addition, physicians will get to practice cases with transradial simulators and participate in live-case presentations as well.

Co-directing this course will be Dr. Tak Kwan, Director of Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory and Interventional Cardiology at The Brooklyn Hospital Center, NY, and also currently attending at St. Vincent's.

One of the main reasons why Dr. Coppola uses the transradial approach, whenever possible, is safety. In his exclusive interview with Angioplasty.Org, Dr. Coppola states:

"For the patients, the benefit is that it's a safer procedure. There's a lack of bleeding. And everything that's coming out now in the literature suggests that if you have bleeding complications, it impacts not only on your short-term, but your long-term survival.... [For the cardiologist,] having that benefit in terms of less bleeding makes you more willing to use potent antiplatelet agents, like IIb/IIIa inhibitors...because you're not worrying about retroperitoneal bleeds or groin hematomas."

    Dr. Coppola
John T. Coppola, MD

Five years ago, Drs. Coppola and Kwan traveled to India to learn the radial technique themselves from Dr. Tejus Patel, who began India's first transradial program and has done over 20,000 transradial procedures. Attendees at the upcoming St. Vincent's course will have the chance to learn from Dr. Patel's own mentor, Dr. Shigeru Saito, Director of Cardiology and Catheterization Laboratories, Shonan Kamakura General Hospital and Sapporo Higashi Tokusyukai Hospital in Hokkaido, Japan.

Drs. Coppola and Saito during a recent course in New York
Drs. Coppola and Saito during a recent course in New York
    Dr. Saito is one of the leading supporters and practitioners of transradial coronary intervention (TRI) in the world. As an evangelist for TRI, he has traveled the world to teach and demonstrate the benefits and techniques that make this procedural access so desirable. One of Dr. Saito’s primary activities is to develop a strategy of retrograde approach in coronary angioplasty for chronic total occlusion. He serves as President of NPO International TRI Network. He serves on the editorial boards of Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions, Journal of Invasive Cardiology and the International Journal of Cardiology. Dr. Saito is widely published in the fields of acute myocardial infarction, cardiomyopathy, coronary angioplasty and the transradial approach. Dr. Saito continues to devote himself to patient care and comfort through the development of Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) and complex coronary angioplasty via the transradial approach.

To assist in educating the professional and patient population in the U.S. about the this technique, Angioplasty.Org has created the "Radial Access Center for Transradial Approach", a special section devoted to information and news about the transradial technique, for both patients and physicians. The Radial Center features interviews with leading practitioners of the radial technique, such as Drs. Jeffrey Popma, R. Lee Jobe, John Coppola, Kirk Garratt and Howard Cohen.

For patients there is also a "Hospital Locator" that lists U.S. centers practicing radial angiography. As Dr. Howard Cohen, also of Lenox Hill Hospital, says of the wrist technique, "Patients really prefer it. 95% of people who've had it both ways would say 'I'm coming back to you, Dr. Cohen because I like this transradial a lot better than the other way!'"

Details on registering for this course are available in this online brochure.

The course is being held on Thursday and Friday, June 12-13, 2008, at:

St. Vincent's Hospital -- Manhattan
170 West 12th Street
New York, NY 10011

The course receives support from Terumo Interventional Systems.