Buerger, a vascular disease that develops due to smoking allergy, turns life into a nightmare. Without complete treatment, the disase often results in limb loss. However, with the technique developed by the Turkish professor, Buerger disease can regress or prevent limb loss in appropriate patients.
Cardiovascular Surgery Specialist Prof. Dr. Yusuf Kalko shared important information about Buerger’s disease and new treatment methods which they developed. Kalko said,” Buerger’s disease is a serious disease caused by smoking occlusion of small and medium arteries and veins. The vessels are blocked by an inflamed clot and the blood flow to the fingers decreases. This vascular problem persists for as long as smoking exists in your life. Over time, Buerger will influence your fingers, hands, feet and legs and non-healing sores occur. These deep sores due to infection, if dont left to smoke, become being gangrene over time and cause limb loss. In more than a quarter of the patients, the feet or legs come to the stage of amputation. Buerger ‘s disease usually presents between the ages of 20 – 40. However, unfortunately today, we see that it goes down to the age of 16-17. We have seen this disease which we generally know as male disease, in women in recent years. ”
It also affects the passive smoker.
Dr.Kalko, emphasize to passive smokers are also at risk. Also Kalko said that, ” Buerger’s disease is caused by smoking. However, people who are exposed to intense cigarette smoke indoors and which we call passive smokers are also in danger. Because this discomfort is actually a smoking allergy. Not everyone, but if you are allergic, even if you do not smoke, the smoke of cigarettes which smoking near to you will affect on you. To avoid this disease, it is necessary to avoid completely from smoking and exposure to cigarette smoke. Because if you go back to your old habit after 30 years or 50 years, your old disease will return to you.
Treatment that gratify patients who have no chance of surgery: “Hybrid Methods”
Prof.Kalko stated that with the new techniques they developed in the treatment of Buerger’s disease, they achieved very successful results in suitable patients. Kalko said ,” The most important step of treatment in Buerger patients is to quit smoking. If you do not refrain from smoking, other treatments do not help. There is absolutely no chance of recovery in medical treatments. The risk of amputation (tissue and limb amputation) is very low in the person who quit smoking . When smoking is not stopped, the wounds do not disappear, they reopen and a large number of amputations may be required. Very few patients with this disease are suitable for vascular bypass surgery. However, in many patients, the disease does not respond to treatments and it is decided to cut the limb. We apply Minimally Invasive Vascular Surgery method in appropriate Buerger patients like vascular diseases. With local anesthesia and tiny incisions, we intervene the problem area and bypass it. Some patients may have some limb loss, but we can recover the foot, which is very important for the patient. Another technique we have just developed is Hybrid Methods. Hybrid methods we actively use in carotid artery disease and leg vessel occlusions. This technique gives us the chance to perform both open surgery, angiography and balloon applications and stent applications at the same time. Therefore, many patients who have not previously been given the chance of surgery can benefit from this. We started to apply hybrid methods to Buerger patients. It can be applied to any Buerger patient whose main vessel is occluded. Knee, groin, above the knee, under the knee can be applied in patients with blocked area. We can also apply this in a patient with no blood flow. Since the inflammation occuring in the veins of Buerger patients is very soft and mucus-like, it is very difficult to clean this vein by standard methods. With the technique we have developed, we can take the 20-30 centimeters of the plaque, which is like a worm, without breaking it. It’s not enough just removing the record. At the same time, we enter the knee with an angiography device, and with the help of a thin wire, we can open the vein up to the foot by making small balloons. Then we bring up the vein, as we open up and down. We’re sewing it end to end. Think of it as joining two pipes. And continuity is ensured. Patients with very serious pain relief after surgery and most importantly, limb losses are prevented. In this way, many patients who are not given the chance of surgery are given the chance of surgery. Since both open and closed methods are used at the same time, the processing time varies between 1-2 hours. We are numbing the patients from the waist region. Postoperative patients should definitely stay away from smoking and should use blood thinners throughout their lives. “