Transradial percutaneous coronary interventions: indications, success rates & clinical outcome

Johannes B Dahm, Frank van Buuren
Indian Heart Journal 2010, 62 (3): 218-20
Before ten years, radial artery was discovered as a useful vascular access site for percutaneous coronary procedures. It has the advantage of reduced access site complications but is associated with specific technical challenges in comparison with the transfemoral approach. Although earlier data from a meta-analysis indicated higher procedure failure rates with radial--as compared to femoral access (7.2 vs. 2.4%), more recent data from prospective multicenter studies and large meta analysis showed significantly better outcomes with radial access versus femoral access in contemporary, real-world clinical settings of percutaneous cardiovascular procedures (e.g. PREVAIL-, PRESTO-ACS-studies). This includes also challenging coronary procedures in acute coronary syndromes (NSTEMI and STEMI) where the radial access was associated with fewer bleeding complications leading to better long-term outcomes. Transradial procedure failures can sometimes be due to variation in radial artery anatomy (e.g. vessel diameter, anomalous branching patterns, tortuosity) or risk factors for radial spasms (e.g. smoking, anxiety, vessel diameter, age, gender). Postprocedural radial occlusions (0.6-1.2%) seems strongly be related to these anatomical variances, which possibly may be reduced by the use of smaller catheter, however 5 French lumen diameter guiding catheter include limitations regarding treating options in complex coronary lesion. In conclusion, the transradial access for coronary angiography and interventions is not only to enhance patients comfort, but shows significant better long-term results due to less bleeding complications as compared to the femoral access.

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