FGH first to use Eluvia stent system

By STAFF REPORTS,

Forrest General Hospital became the first hospital in Mississippi to use the Eluvia Drug-Eluting Vascular Stent System, which is specifically designed to treat peripheral artery disease. The procedure was performed by Robert Wilkins, M.D., FACC, a cardiologist at Forrest General Hospital.

“The Eluvia is a special type of stent that releases medication, specifically the drug paclitaxel, for up to one year after surgery,” said Wilkins. “This allows the stented artery to heal without the risk of tissue growth that could re-block the artery. I hope this advanced treatment option will be revolutionary for the millions of people in the U.S. who are affected by peripheral artery disease (PAD), and I’m happy to have played a part in bringing this option to my community.”

  PAD occurs when fatty or calcified atherosclerotic material, called plaque, builds up on the walls of the arteries of the legs, restricting blood flow and causing pain, swelling and a diminished quality of life. If blood flow is not restored and maintained, severe cases of PAD can lead to pain, ulcers and even amputation of the affected limb.

 Risk factors for vascular disease include a family history of vascular disease, age, gender, race, and several risk factors that can be controlled, including high blood pressure, smoking, high cholesterol, obesity, lack of exercise and diabetes. Forrest General and Hattiesburg Clinic Vascular Surgeons offer a free comprehensive cardiovascular disease and early detection program called Dare to C.A.R.E. The program is available at certain times throughout the year to qualifying men and women in the Pine Belt.