Strategies for treatment of the superficial femoral artery with the concepts of “Leaving nothing behind” or “Leaving something in” will take centre stage in the Peripheral Arterial Controversies session of this year’s CX Main Programme. In addition, delegates will hear about early clinical outcomes with a new flexible endoluminal stent for iliac artery disease. The treatment of popliteal aneurysms by endovascular means will also be subject of discussion, as well as the best treatment options for below-the-knee lesions.    

Roger Greenhalgh, chairman of the CX Programme Organising Board, says that the session aiming at “unpacking” the superficial femoral artery will be one of the highlights of the CX Peripheral Arterial Day in the Main Programme (Tuesday 28 April). “We will try to inform the audience about what to do in the superficial femoral artery and when, depending on the type and length of lesion and based on the available evidence.” He adds, “The speakers will consider more severe arterial disease which in their view requires a stent. If something is to be ‘left behind’ this needs to be justified”.

Commenting on the “Leaving nothing behind” concept, Cliff Shearman (University of Southampton, Southampton, UK), member of the CX Organising Board, says: “This is a great idea but the technology (drug-coated balloons, atherectomy) is expensive and we have to see the evidence on how much benefit it does give and for how long.”

Moreover, attendees will learn the results, at five years, of the superficial femoral artery treatment with open surgery.     

Delegates will also have the opportunity to discuss in more detail the superficial femoral artery controversies on Thursday 30 April in two roundtables to be held at the CX ilegx Collaboration Day course.

Furthermore, in the CX Peripheral Arterial Day, iliac reconstruction will be addressed with early clinical outcomes of a new flexible endoluminal stent graft. Additionally, the treatment of popliteal aneurysms by endovascular means will be subject of discussion. Commenting on his view on the topic, Shearman says: “Although this is commonly advocated we need to see the long-term results. Also we need to ask ourselves, ‘How many popliteal aneurysms are really suitable for endovascular treatment’?” Physicians will have the chance to discuss their views during this debate at the end of the session.

Below-the-knee treatment options and their effectiveness will also be discussed. Michael Edmonds, member of the CX Organising Board, says: “Addressing below-the-knee intervention strategies is of great importance considering the dramatic rise in the incidence of diabetes mellitus.” Greenhalgh adds: “The below-the-knee arteries are smaller and have difficult technical challenges—the durability of the procedures is seldom stated longer than for two years.”

When treating patients with peripheral arterial disease Greenhalgh says, “advising the patient on self-management including smoking cessation, exercise and healthy living is fundamental”. The second principle, he adds, is to intervene only when it is necessary and avoid making the patient worse. And finally, it is necessary to intervene with a technique as minimal as possible and that can produce durable results. “In the end, it is the patient’s quality of life that matters and if the arterial disease is overcome the symptoms should improve,” he notes.

The CX Peripheral Arterial Day will take place at the Charing Cross Symposium on Tuesday 28 April – Main Auditorium, Olympia Grand, London, UK

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