Laser angioplasty in peripheral vascular disease: Symptomatic versus hemodynamic results

John Blebea, Kenneth Ouriel, Richard M. Green, William M. Fiore, Ethan L. Welch, Jerry J. Svoboda, Malur R. Balaji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Most early reports on the efficacy of laser angioplasty have used subjective symptoms rather than objective hemodynamic parameters to evaluate clinical results. We reviewed our experience with hot tip laser-assisted balloon angioplasty in 99 occluded or stenotic arterial segments during 80 procedures in 71 patients, ranging from the aortic bifurcation to the tibial-peroneal trunk. Initial failure to successfully recanalize occluded or stenotic segments occurred in 13 instances (16%). Forty-one procedure-related complications occurred in 31 patients (39%). Functional results were evaluated by use of life-table methods on the basis of symptomatic versus hemodynamic improvement. Cumulative patency rates for symptomatic and hemodynamic improvement were 91% and 64% at 1 month, 71% and 48% at 6 months, and 57% and 34% at 1 year, respectively. These data suggest that symptomatic improvement alone gives a misleadingly high estimate of the efficacy of laser angioplasty when compared with more objective hemodynamic criteria (p < 0.005). Hemodynamic success was more likely in aortoiliac lesions than femoropopliteal lesions (58% vs 18% at 1 year, p < 0.01). Hemodynamic parameters should be used to evaluate the success of laser angioplasty, which in its present form, is associated with frequent complications and poor long-term success.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-230
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Vascular Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1991


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