Seven hundred ten high speed rotational atherectomy (HSRA) procedures were performed in a single consecutive series of 656 patients. Stand alone HSRA was performed in 253 patients (35%). HSRA with adjunctive low pressure (< or = 2 ATM) balloon angioplasty (LP BA) was performed in 221 patients (31%), and HSRA with adjunctive high pressure (> or = 4 ATM) balloon angioplasty (HP BA) was performed in 236 patients (34%). Prognostically unfavorable Type B2 and C lesions dominated the study group (74.7%). Procedural success rate was 96%. Emergency coronary artery bypass surgery was performed in 1.4% of cases, Q wave myocardial infarction occurred in 3.4% and death, related to procedure, was consequent in 0.5% of cases. Incidence of flow limiting dissections was 3.1%, distal spasm was 5.3%, and "no reflow" phenomenon was 1.8%. The recent technique modifications included continuous advancer/guiding catheter infusion of the nitroglycerin-verapamil mixture, limitation of duration of lesion engagement by the burr, stepwise increase in the burr size, decrease of rotational speed, and strict control of rpm drop during lesion ablation. Evolution of the interventional technique involved trends towards decrease of the use of HP BA in conjunction with steady increase in the percentage of SA and LP BA procedures over time. These technique changes resulted in complete absence of "no reflow" in 1994, as well as a generalized decrease in overall coronary vascular reactivity from all burr passes.