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Ra Medical, a company out of Carlsbad, California, received FDA clearance and is reporting the first commercial use of its DABRA laser-based arterial blockage ablation system. Unlike most other intravascular tools used for removing arterial plaque that rely on mechanical methods, the DABRA is an excimer laser that emits at a wavelength of 308 nm, in the UVB range. The laser essentially cooks down calcium, thrombi, and atheroma that narrow the artery into simpler components, reducing the material that ends up going through the vessel as it’s cleared.
The laser radiation is delivered through the DABRA Catheter that does not require a guidewire to push through the vessel during treatment. According to the company, the technology is appropriate for all types of peripheral lesions and can be “used with introducers, sheaths, and guide catheters, operated ipsilateral and contralateral, and antegrade and retrograde.”
The system comes on wheels, weighs about 100 lbs (50 kg), and is ready to go within four minutes of being plugged in. The catheters are disposable, while the rest of it is not.
“DABRA is what we have been waiting for to better treat our patients,” in a statement said Athar Ansari, MD, Director of California Heart & Vascular Clinic. “It is a two-in-one. You cross the blockage and remove the plaque from the artery. It is safe, because it stays in the patient’s true lumen and does not go subintimal or perforate – common complications of other devices – and it’s effective on all types of lesions. It is revolutionary wireless technology and effective in cases in which other devices have failed. DABRA should be part of every cardiovascular catheter lab’s armentarium.”