Transmyocardial laser revascularization: Experimental and clinical results

G. Chad Hughes, Salah Abdel-Allem, Shankha S. Biswas, Kevin P. Landolfo, James E. Lowe

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Transmyocardial laser revascularization (TMR) is an emerging therapy for the treatment of coronary artery disease not amenable to percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) or coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG). OBJECTIVE: To summarize the experimental and clinical experience to date with TMR. Specifically, the history of the technique, preclinical and clinical data, patient selection and perioperative management, as well as future applications of TMR are discussed. DATA SOURCES: All English language articles pertaining to TMR published through March 1999. MEDLINE was searched with the key words 'myocardial revascularization', 'lasers' and 'laser surgery', as well as the text terms 'transmyocardial laser revascularization', 'TMR' and 'TMLR'. Reference lists of articles obtained from MEDLINE were studied for additional references not discovered in computer searches. Pertinent abstracts published within the past two years were reviewed as well. STUDY SELECTION: Studies that produced original experimental or clinical data were selected. DATA SYNTHESIS: Experimental studies demonstrate that TMR channels become occluded in the early postoperative period. However, experimental data indicate that laser injury appears to promote neovascularization with secondary improvements in perfusion in treated regions. Human clinical studies confirm the efficacy of the procedure, with significant improvements in anginal class up to at least one year postoperatively, although documented improvements in myocardial perfusion have been less consistent. Perioperative morbidity and mortality appear to be increased in patients with unstable angina or reduced left ventricular function. CONCLUSIONS: With careful patient selection and perioperative management, TMR is a safe and effective therapy for severe angina pectoris secondary to end-stage coronary artery disease. Additional studies are required to define the role of TMR in combination with PTCA, CABG and angiogenic growth factors, as well as the safety and efficacy of catheter-based TMR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)797-806
Number of pages10
JournalCanadian Journal of Cardiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1999


  • Lasers
  • Revascularization
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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