Unclogging your arteries with collagenase

Uploaded by SunnybrookMedia on 20.12.2010

On screen text: Sunnybrook logo. Title: Drano for Your Heart, Schulich Heart Centre. [Heartbeat sound in background]
On screen text: Monday, November 28, 2010. Monica Matys [narrator]: John Balkwill is no stranger to hospitals,
he's had multiple stents and even triple bypass surgery to try to ease his heart problems,
but the pain always came bak. John: In the last two years
I've had multiple blockages, minor
heart attacks, which have led to
just a deteriorating lifestyle.
For me to walk one block I can't do that no more without having
angina pains. On screen text: One hour later. . . Monica: But here at Sunnybrook, John is now part
of a world first, a revolutionary new trial to try and
open up his severely blocked arteries, much like you would a clogged drain
in your home, by injecting a powerful agent called collagenase, letting it sit and then breaking through
the blockage the next day to restore proper blood flow. Think of it as
drano for the body. This remarkable procedure is the brain
child of Dr. Bradley Strauss, who says he and his team at
Sunnybrook have had a nearly 85 percent success rate so far.
Dr. Strauss: 15 of the 18 patients now have stents and have open arteries so
we're very. . . that was beyond what our initial
expecations ever would be, so we're thrilled about it. Monica: Each patient,
including John, had already had an unsuccessful attempt to open their
blocked arteries with angioplasty. John's arteries were so
clogged nothing was getting through the concrete-like buildup. In the first
part of the procedure, Dr. Strausse and his team inject the
collagenase to the blocked areas through a catheter. Then, the next day
they attempt to break through the blockage and insert a stent to restore
blood flow. In most cases, including John's, the collagenase
makes that possible. Dr. Strauss: Here, when we start, the
circumflex is blocked right here, right where this branch comes off, no
blood flow here. Now, this is that branch that's here, now it's--this
is what it looks like now. And we've stented the entire
circumflex into this branch here, and we also have full opening of
these two other branches. So there's three new branches, plus the main circumflex all from there. K? John: Oh wow.
Monica: While it won't work for every patient, Dr. Strauss says there are hundreds of
thousands every year who could benefit. Dr. Strauss: There are a lot of patients
that currently, I think, go to bypass surgery that wouldn't need to go if we
could open the artery, and there are a lot of patients, unfortunately, that are
stuck with lives that are limited, and those
patients I think can be helped. For us, it's very, very gratifying.
Each time it's sweet, each time. Monica: Dr. Strauss
hopes that within a year centres around the world will be working with
this drug. John was awake for the entire procedure and able to
see how successful it really was. John: Oh, that's just remarkable.
I couldn't believe, I thought maybe we'd get a little piece opened up, but not
three main arteries again. This is unbelievable that
something like this can be done.
Monica: John was out of options, but thanks to Dr. Strauss, he's now
out of pain, and less than a day after surgery, he's heading home.
John: I went through the whole night without pain for the first time.
I haven't been able to accomplish that in over a year, so that is
something that's going to be totally new, so that's . . . new step every
day now. Monica: With SunnyView, I'm Monica Matys.
On screen text: Visit my blog, sunnyview.sunnybrook.ca. [Heartbeat in background]