Why Characterize the Vessel Wall?

Angiography and the injection of dye into the coronary artery provides valuable information about the degree of narrowing that is present – but, it does not reveal the vessel structure or plaque composition of the vessel wall. Intravascular imaging with ultrasound (IVUS) provides a picture of the structure of the wall, but it has only limited ability to determine the plaque composition of the vessel.

Identification of plaque composition is important because the coronary arteries may contain dangerous lipid core plaques that complicate stenting procedures and are associated with heart attacks. Identification of the lipid core plaques can aid the physician in the conduct of the stenting procedure, and contribute to management strategies designed to prevent future heart attacks.

True vessel characterization--the rapid, specific, and reliable identification of lipid-core plaques using NIRS combined with IVUS information about vessel structure--provides sound insight into vascular disease.

The Value of Vessel Structure and Plaque Composition by the TVC System

True vessel characterization can facilitate the rapid and informed clinical decision-making by enabling interventional cardiologists to:
  • More reliably select optimal stent diameter and length to optimize lesion coverage.
  • Determine optimal stent landing zones.
  • Assess the risk of peri-procedural myocardial infarction. Dilation of a stenosis containing a large lipid core plaque is associated with a 50% risk of peri-procedural myocardial infarction.
  • Evaluate stent expansion post-balloon inflation, thereby reducing risk of thrombosis and restenosis due to stent under-expansion.
True vessel characterization provides comprehensive information that can aid in the management of patients.
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