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Doctor saves 106-year-old man suffering from acute myocardial infarction
  • By Lee Han-soo
  • Published 2018.03.08 14:58
  • Updated 2018.03.08 15:15
  • comments 0

A doctor at Daejeon St. Mary’s Hospital succeeded in saving a 106-year-old man diagnosed with acute myocardial infarction by performing a rotational atherectomy (ROTA), the hospital said Wednesday.

Professor Park Ha-wook holds the hand of his 106-year-old patient at the Daejeon St. Mary’s Hospital.

According to the hospital, Professor Park Ha-wook received the patient suffering from persistent chest pain and dyspnea. After performing a coronary angiography on the patient, Park diagnosed him with acute myocardial infarction after confirming a 99 percent occlusion in right coronary artery and a 99 percent stenosis with a calcified lesion in the left anterior descending artery.

Based on the diagnosis, Park implanted a stent on the right coronary during the first surgery in November last year, while conducting a second ROTA and stent implant surgery on the left anterior descending artery on Feb. 27. The operation was successful, and the patient has since restored all of his heart functions.

ROTA is a high-risk cardiovascular intervention operation that should be attempted only when a general balloon angioplasty is impossible. Patients with coronary artery stenosis accompanied by severely calcified lesions usually receive the surgery. Such severe symptoms are why there are almost no reports of ROTA surgery on patients older than 100 years worldwide.

The procedure involves inserting an iron ball coated with diamond powder into the lesion. The iron ball then rotates, 180,000 revolutions per minute, chipping away the coronary artery aneurysms and calcified lesions into small molecules. Such practice is advantageous as it can target specific areas for resection while avoiding the healthy vascular tissue.

“Although the patient was 106 years old, his general condition and cognitive ability were good,” Professor Park said. “The decision to conduct the operation came after judging that the acute myocardial infarction may become critical if left untreated.”

The success of the surgery has opened up a more aggressive alternative treatment option for elderly patients suffering from cardiovascular diseases, who had to rely only on medications, Park added.


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