Evaluation of a new balloon catheter for difficult calcified lesions in infrainguinal arterial disease: outcome of a multicenter registry

Cardiovasc Intervent Radiol. 2009 Jan;32(1):132-5. doi: 10.1007/s00270-008-9398-1. Epub 2008 Jul 26.


The purpose of this study was to assess the technical performance and immediate procedure outcome of a new balloon catheter in the treatment of calcified lesions in infrainguinal arterial disease. Seventy-five patients with infrainguinal arterial disease were prospectively entered into the registry. The catheter (ReeKross Clearstream, Ireland) is a 5- to 6-Fr balloon catheter with a rigid shaft intended for enhanced pushability. Only technical procedural outcome was recorded. Treated calcified lesions (range: 5-30 cm), assessed angiographically, were located in the superficial femoral, popliteal, and crural arteries. In 67 patients the lesion was an occlusion. Guidewire passage occurred subintimally in 68 patients. In 24 patients a standard balloon catheter was chosen as first treatment catheter: 5 failed to cross the lesion, 8 balloons ruptured, and in 11 patients there was an inadequate dilatation result. In only one of the five patients did subsequent use of the ReeKross catheter also fail in lesion crossing. The ReeKross was successful as secondary catheter in the other 23 cases. In 50 patients the ReeKross was used as primary catheter. In total the ReeKross crossed the lesions in 74 patients. After passage and dilatation with this catheter in 73 patients (1 failed true-lumen reentry), 19 had >30% residual lesions, of which 11 were not treated and 8 were successfully stented. No ReeKross balloons ruptured. We conclude that in the treatment of difficult calcified lesions in arterial stenotic or occlusive disease, the choice of a high-pushability angioplasty catheter, with more calcification-resistant balloon characteristics, like the ReeKross, warrants consideration.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Angiography
  • Arterial Occlusive Diseases / therapy*
  • Calcinosis / therapy*
  • Catheterization / instrumentation*
  • Femoral Artery
  • Humans
  • Peripheral Vascular Diseases / therapy*
  • Popliteal Artery
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries
  • Stents
  • Treatment Outcome