Category Archives: Media Coverage

Angioplasty Arrives in the Outback: First Stent Placed in Northern Territory

Northern Territory - AustraliaIt’s been over 35 years since the first angioplasty was performed in Zurich by Dr. Andreas Gruentzig, but it was just yesterday that this minimally invasive procedure arrived in Australia’s Northern Territory.

As reported today by Sky News, Dr. Marcus Ilton, chief cardiologist at Royal Darwin Hospital, performed the first angioplasty and stent implantation ever done in the NT. Continue reading


Filed under Global Trends, Media Coverage, Stent

Ask George W. Bush a Question About His Stent…or Anything Else

Ask Bush a QuestionWant to ask George W. Bush a question about his stent…or anything else? Click here!

Six months ago, former President Bush received an angioplasty and stent. The stent was recommended by Bush’s doctors to open a blockage in one of his coronary arteries, found during his annual physical exam. EKG changes were seen on his stress test, a CT angiogram was performed and a blockage seen. He was rushed off to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas where Dr. Tony Das performed a percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI, a.k.a. angioplasty). A single stent was inserted in the newly opened vessel. Continue reading


Filed under Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC), Celebrity Patients, Media Coverage, Meetings & Conferences, Stent

Another Viewpoint on Renal Denervation and SYMPLICITY HTN-3 from Dr. Darrel Francis

Symplicity Renal Denervation System

Symplicity Renal Denervation System

Is the failure of the SYMPLICITY HTN-3 trial to meet its efficacy endpoint the “end of the road” for renal denervation? Will renal denervation now land on the heap of failed technologies? I don’t think so, and Dr. Darrel Francis, the cardiologist who famously predicted that SYMPLICITY HTN-3 would not meet its endpoint, agrees.

In fact Dr. Francis told Angioplasty.Org that it would be a “grave error” if the FDA withheld renal denervation from the American people, based on this news!

OK. Do I have your attention? Continue reading


Filed under ACC, Global Trends, High Blood Pressure, Media Coverage

Surgery, Stents and Sports: “Let’s Go to the Videotape!”

A recent New York Times article delves into a topic not often discussed: the fact that some surgeons are more skilled than others. “A Vital Measure: Your Surgeon’s Skill” by Dr. Pauline W. Chen is a fascinating look at a taboo topic. Dr. Chen describes an innovative program where a group of expert surgeons judges how skilled a particular colleague is by looking at a close-up videotape of how he or she works with their hands, utilizes equipment, and so on. How can you tell if a surgeon is on his game? As famed sports commentator Warner Wolf would say in his catch-phrase, “Let’s Go to the Videotape!”

Video control room

Video control room in an early angioplasty live demonstration course

However, watching procedures on video is nothing new to me, or to any member of the interventional cardiology community. The field of angioplasty started on Day One with live demonstration courses where procedures were performed utilizing live TV broadcasts (see my video at the bottom of this post). I designed and directed many of these early courses and we focused cameras on the operator’s hands, very similar to the videos in Dr. Chen’s article. And just last week at the TCT 2013 Annual Symposium, thousands of cardiologists watched the hands of their colleagues in HD video on a 100 foot screen, being broadcast from Germany, or South Korea, or New York. Continue reading

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Filed under History, Innovators, Media Coverage, Meetings & Conferences, Video

R.I.P. Angioplasty 1977-2013 – Really?

Nortin M. Hadler, MD, MACP, MACR, FACOEM

Nortin M. Hadler, MD, MACP, MACR, FACOEM

I’m in shock. Dr. Nortin Hadler of the University of North Carolina has proclaimed that the era of coronary angioplasty is over.

Poor, poor angioplasty…you were barely 36 years old, but you’re no longer needed. Guess we’re going to have to find a new name for our web site!

Of course, my first thought upon seeing this Op-Ed piece posted today on The Health Care Blog was that it was yet another article railing against the overuse of stents in patients with stable angina. Continue reading


Filed under ACC, Clinical Trials / Studies, Heart Attack, Media Coverage, Meetings & Conferences, Stent

George W. Bush Gets Angioplasty and Stent – Was It Necessary?

George W BushFormer President George W. Bush received an angioplasty and stent this morning at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. The stent was recommended by Bush’s doctors to open a blockage in one of his coronary arteries, found yesterday during what was described by Bush spokesman Freddy Ford as his annual physical exam at the Cooper Clinic in Dallas. Continue reading


Filed under Angiograms, Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC), Cardiac CT, Celebrity Patients, COURAGE, Drug-Eluting Stents, FFR, Imaging, Media Coverage, Non-Invasive Testing, Optimal Medical Therapy, Stent

Recycling Health News for Google Dollars, Robot Style

By Mirko Tobias Schaefer [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

“Writing Robot” by Mirko Tobias Schaefer [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

I don’t know a health reporter named Geoff Michaels. I guess I should because in less than 3 months, Geoff has authored almost 1,000 health articles, mostly about heart disease, angioplasty and stents. Geoff writes for a site named Toronto NewsFix, which seems to have been started back in April 2013. I also don’t know Martin March, who’s authored almost 300. Or Robert Cervin, who’s chalked up 700. Or April Clarkson, also at 1,000 posts (she seems to cover any story containing the word “women”). And there are more reporters at NewsFix, as well.

The stories are short, usually less than 200 words, but there are thousands. So how come I have never heard about this website that has such an enormous output? And  how come I didn’t realize that there were so many healthcare stories out there? Continue reading

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Filed under Media Coverage, Web Site