For patients suffering from angina and blockages in their heart, Angioplasty and Bypass surgery are the most common suggested treatments. However, certain people may be unsuitable for angioplasty.
The use of angioplasty to open up a small portion of the arteries might end up being unsuccessful. Even if it is attempted, the chances of it happening again are quite high. For such people, an alternative like EECP Treatment is suggested.
What is EECP?
EECP is a mechanical process in which the patient’s legs are wrapped in long inflated cuffs (similar to blood pressure cuffs). A computer controls the inflation and deflation, using the patient’s electrocardiogram (ECG) to trigger inflation early in diastole (when the heart rests and fills with blood) and deflation just before systole (heart contraction) begins.
Benefits of EECP (Enhanced External Counterpulsation) Treatment
Improves blood flow: When the heart is at rest, EECP works as a second heart, improving the circulation of oxygenated blood throughout the arterial system and organs of the body. The sheer power of oxygenated blood flow reversed (from legs to heart) rises, and essential hormones, gases, and cells are released throughout the vascular system.
Help normalize high blood pressure: In the case of the endothelium’s poor function, the artery walls are constricted and rigid in patients with high blood pressure. The production of nitric oxide, which promotes dilatation of the arterial walls, helps EECP reverse arterial stiffness and assist in normalizing high blood pressure.
Reduces the symptoms of angina pectoris (chest pain): New collaterals form after EECP therapy, allowing oxygenated blood to circulate freely throughout the arterial system. Hormones are produced at the same time to assist in dilating/opening arteries and allow blood to flow. Multiple clinical research investigations have shown that EECP can help reduce angina pectoris symptoms.
Increases hormone production: EECP helps patients with high blood pressure normalize their blood pressure by affecting endothelial function and increasing hormone production that promotes arterial health.
Reduces symptoms of coronary artery disease: Nitric oxide helps to dilate (widen) arterial walls, allowing more blood to circulate throughout the body and to all organs. This process helps to soften and elasticize arteries, which improves circulation, lowers blood pressure, and reduces the symptoms of coronary artery disease. The heart and all other organs work better when there is more oxygen-rich blood flowing throughout the body.
Improves endothelial function: EECP reduces arterial stiffness, which contributes to high blood pressure, by improving endothelial function (the lining of the body’s arteries). People can develop “hardening of the arteries” as their blood pressure rises. The performance of the endothelium (the lining of the arteries) increases as well. Because of EECP’s squeezing function, the velocity of circulating blood inside the arteries improves, which helps to enhance arterial suppleness and elasticity.
Cost-effective: While EECP therapies provide similar relief to Bypass and Angioplasty, they are significantly less expensive when compared to surgical procedures.
Promotes regeneration: EECP stimulates regeneration, which aids the development of circulating stem cells in the endothelium (lining of the artery). This promotes the circulation of blood and the regeneration of organs throughout the body.
Long-lasting impacts: According to EECP studies, patients who undergo the treatment see a long-term (up to seven years) improvement in their cardiovascular disease symptoms.
What are the side effects of EECP?
ECP has almost no adverse effects if the participants for the operation are chosen appropriately. People with severe aortic valve leakage, PDA, leg vein clotting, or leg ulcers should not undergo the treatment. Before starting therapy, make sure your blood pressure and leg inflammation from heart failure is under control.
Mild abrasions in the legs might occur in people with sensitive skin. Because EECP treatment activates lower limb muscles, leg cramps may occur for a few days in persons who are completely untrained for activity.
Leading hospitals all around the globe have proven the effectiveness of EECP. The success of EECP may be measured by the fact that in the United States, the Medicare reimbursement rate for EECP has grown by 7%, while the rate for other treatments like angioplasty and bypass surgery has fallen by 6%.
According to the recent research done by The International EECP Patient Registry (IEPR) (which gathers information on the safety, efficacy and long-term benefits of EECP therapy) shows that the advantages of EECP Therapy can persist up to 5 years after finishing one course of therapy (35 hours).