Treatment for peripheral artery disease (PAD) typically involves lifestyle changes or medication, but in some instances, surgery such as angioplasty is recommended because it is minimally invasive and cost-effective. However, in the arteries below the hip, angioplasty has had disappointing results - approximately 40% of patients will need to be treated again within one year because of artery re-blockage due to scar tissue accumulation, which cryoplasty has been shown to prevent.

“Blockages that occur in the lower extremities are a challenge to treat, not only because of their location in the body, but because of the extensiveness of the plaque build-up in these arteries.” said John Laird, M.D., Washington Hospital Center, Washington, D.C. “The early results of cryoplasty in these patients are very promising when compared to the effectiveness of currently available treatments.”

A total of 102 patients were enrolled in this prospective, multicenter trial and treated with cryoplasty. Following the initial cryoplasty treatment, long-term clinical follow-up measures indicating the need for revascularisation or the presence of continued blockage were collected for two to four years. At nine months, results showed that 82.2% of patients did not need additional treatment, and at 16 months, rates were similarly promising at 77.8%. Extended follow up to a mean of 31 months, the clinical patency rate was sustained at a very favourable 73.5%

“The fact that overall success rates for these patients have not significantly decreased over time is exciting,” According to Dr. Laird. “Based on these results, long-term follow-up of cryoplasty patients is critically important in order to be able to fully evaluate the durability of cryoplasty for the treatment of lower extremity PAD.”; Source: Cardiovascular Research Foundation