Recently, I had the pleasure of attending the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions annual conference. The 4 day conference included an array of educational tracks, including coronary, structural heart, quality, congenital heart, and peripheral vascular; scientific symposia; and events geared towards interventional cardiologists and cath lab staff. Attendees had several opportunities to learn more about robotic-assisted PCI while at SCAI 2014 including live demonstrations of the CorPath System at the Corindus booth, a poster presentation on complex robotic-assisted PCI, and a breakfast symposium on Thursday morning.
During the symposium, CorPath users from across the country highlighted the benefits of CorPath, spoke on their experience performing robotic-assisted PCI, and elaborated on how to start a successful robotics program. One of the common concerns for physicians considering robotics programs is the loss of tactile feedback when robotically manipulating the wire. Dr. Ehtisham Mahmud, Chief of Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of San Diego’s Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center explained that “To my surprise, I find that my wiring skills might actually be superior with the robot than they are manually. This might be due to the guidewire being gripped, resulting in better torque control, in the cassette.”
Another hot topic at the conference was research that was recently presented at the SOLACI conference in April highlighting the incidence of head and neck tumors in physicians exposed to radiation over the course of their career. The study has been following 36 cases of head and neck malignancies, 28 of which belong to interventional cardiologists. In 86% of the cases, the malignancy is left-sided, indicating a correlation with the physician’s position relative to the radiation source. This is not only an emerging topic of discussion; it is also one of great importance as not enough has been done to protect the operator from occupational hazards such as cancer, cataracts, and the orthopedic issues that can occur as a result of heavy protective apparel. This infographic, which we displayed in the exhibit hall, outlines a few of the risks interventional cardiologists face and how CorPath can protect the operator.
Overall, SCAI was an exciting conference for interventional cardiology with record breaking attendance. The presentations that were given during our breakfast symposium will be made available on our website shortly. If you are not already subscribed to our newsletter to receive updates on this and other upcoming events and news, you can do so by clicking here.