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Novel Shockwave Technology Breaks Up Deep Vascular Calcification

December 23, 2022
Shockwave 1 web
Based on the principles of kidney stone treatment, IVL technology creates a localized field effect to selectively disrupt deep calcium.

Cardiologists at Orlando Health Orlando Regional Medical Center (ORMC) are among the first in Florida to use novel shockwave technology to treat severely calcified coronary arteries.

Delivered by traditional catheter and recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration, Shockwave Intravascular Lithotripsy (IVL) uses sonic pressure waves to create a series of microfractures that break apart problematic deep vascular calcium buildup. Based on established treatment for renal calculi, IVL safely expands heart arteries and restores blood flow in patients requiring coronary revascularization.

Vijaykumar S. Kasi, MD, PhD
Vijaykumar S. Kasi, MD, PhD

“With IVL, calcium buildup is more easily cleared and with less trauma to the vessel,” 

says Vijaykumar S. Kasi, MD, PhD, interventional cardiologist and director of cardiovascular research for Orlando Health Heart and Vascular Institute. Dr. Kasi also published the first article in the world about using the technology for stenosed renal arteries.

Shockwave technology offers high procedural success with minimal patient discomfort, while lowering the risk of complications such as major dissections, perforation and distal emboli. The procedure takes about 30 minutes, with patients discharged the next day.

Shockwave 1 web
IVL technology can crack calcium models while minimizing trauma to the vessel wall.

“Patients with heart blockages that might have been hard to fix due to risk of complications can now have them repaired safely and return to normal activities without chest pain,” says Dr. Kasi, who also has used shockwave therapy to unblock peripheral and renal arteries. He continues to advance clinical research studies to improve the understanding of the novel technology.

Orlando Health has long been a regional leader in cardiovascular innovation with experts specializing in more than 40 heart and vascular areas. Our Cardiovascular Research Program is committed to advancing biomedical sciences and ushering in the latest technology to serve patients. Physician investigators also conduct clinical trials sponsored by the National Institutes of Health or industry innovators.

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