RAWALPINDI: The Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology (RIC) has successfully performed the MitraClip (mitral clip) procedure, becoming the first hospital in South Asia to use the novel, percutaneous method of heart treatment.
Major General (retd) Dr Azhar Mehmood Kayani, the head of RIC, told the performance of the procedure has made the hospital the first in Pakistan, as well as South Asia, to use the MitraClip technique successfully.
“It is an honour for the Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology and Pakistan to carry out the mitral clipping procedure successfully,” he said, adding that the procedure was performed on former president Muhammad Rafiq Tarar.
The MitraClip technique is the world’s first transcatheter mitral valve repair therapy. It targets patients with severe degenerative Mitral Regurgitation who are too high-risk for open heart surgery and do not have other treatment options available to them.
Mitral Regurgitation is the most common type of heart valve disease, affecting nearly 1 in 10 people aged 75 years and older.
“The MitraClip procedure is carried out in patients who cannot undergo surgery, usually older patients for whom a heart surgery has been deemed too risky,” Dr Kayani said.
He said the technique carries some risk of complications, but no complications have yet been reported at the RIC.
Dr Kayani said that the procedure has been implemented in the United States and Europe, at costs as high as Rs 10 million.
“But for the first time in South Asia, the Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology has performed the procedure for Rs 4 million,” he noted.
The Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology was formally inaugurated on September 25, 2012. Renowned cardiologist Major General (retd) Dr. Azhar Mehmood Kayani of the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology is the chief executive of RIC.