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Myocardial disease
Alternative interventions for refractory angina
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  • Published on:
    Endovascular occlusion and intra-myocardial tunnelization of the internal mammary arteries:

    Dear Editor,
    With great interest, I read the article by Sainsbury and associates[1] and congratulate them for extensively reviewing the unsolved issue of refractory angina. How many suffer from this condition worldwide remains unclear. However, it is believed that hundreds of thousands of Americans are affected, and that this number increases annually. Likely, millions are affected worldwide. Diffuse coronary artery disease is the main reason for refractory angina, because such arteries are non-amenable to percutaneous interventions or bypass grafting. Comorbidities are a second reason, especially in our aging population. Yet history is a cycle; medicine’s history no exception. Old concept, experiments, and theories that have fallen by the wayside can sometimes be resurrected and re-explored, released from the technological constraints of their time. The coronary sinus reducer system is one good example, since the concept stems from studies on the effects of cardiac vein ligation performed in the 1930s by Canadian surgeon Mercier Fauteux[2]. Two additional concepts might be resurrected and adapted to modern technologies. One is the concept of internal mammary artery (IMA) occlusion which, at that time, was performed through a small bilateral incision between the second and third ribs. The belief was that localized hypertension superior to the obstruction increased perfusion pressure in channels leading to the heart, specifically through the peri-cardio-phrenic br...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.