EECP Therapy: A Wonder Alternative to Heart Bypass Surgery.
A natural alternative to heart bypass surgery
Are you in search of a non-invasive alternative to bypass surgery for treatment of cardiovascular problems that includes treatment for Angina? If so, then there’s an excellent natural therapy called EECP, which stands for Enhanced External Counter-Pulsation, for people suffering from cardiovascular diseases including angina pain and/or heart failure, or who are unable to have heart bypass surgery or angioplasty.
Unlike invasive heart bypass surgery or balloon/stent angioplasty, EECP therapy is a natural procedure which is often termed as ‘natural bypass’ alternative to heart bypass surgery. The procedure is relaxing and is absolutely free from the risks normally associated with invasive procedures. The benefits of this natural therapy are yet to be fully comprehended, especially due to poor awareness among the people. This may be also due to the fact that physicians are not popularizing this process as it may pose a threat to the multimillion dollar open heart surgery industry, which is prospering on continuous supply of heart patients to the cardiac surgery suites of the big hospitals by the practicing cardiologists, in spite of exorbitant cost and pain to the patients.
What is EECP therapy?
EECP therapy, which is a natural alternative to bypass surgery is totally a non-surgical procedure with amazing success rate and does not involve hospitalization, anesthesia or even any special medicines before or after the procedure and the patient can go home immediately after the treatment. EECP is relaxing and is absolutely free from the risks normally associated with heart bypass surgery. EECP therapy is highly cost effective, which costs only 1/4th of the cost of surgery or angioplasty and is normally carried out in out-patient sessions. The only downside is that this wonder natural heart treatment is too good to be true and it takes sometime to comprehend and say yes to it.
How EECP works as an alternative to bypass surgery?
EECP therapy is a high-tech treatment carried out entirely by a computerized machine. The patient lies on a special type of bed of the machine and soft pads, very similar to blood pressure pads, are tied to both his legs, below the knees and above, at the hips and both his arms (see the photo above). Three or five electrodes are applied to the chest to record a constant ECG. Negative and positive pressure is then put into these cuffs which inflates and deflates them. The inflation/deflation cycle of the cuffs is synchronized with the patient’s heart beats and forces the blood to travel from the legs to the heart. The blood flow through the blood vessels and the arteries also increases considerably as a result. These lead to a better functional efficiency of the heart. Thus EECP treatment considerably increases the blood flow to the heart and the impact/effect of the treatment prevails for a long time. EECP therapy relieves chest pain for the patient, makes breathing easier for him, helps him to take a longer walk and it provides him a much better quality of life. The five-year outcomes for patients who have gone for EECP treatment as an alternative to heart bypass surgery have been observed to be virtually same as for patients who have gone for angioplasty or invasive heart bypass.
This wonder alternative to bypass surgery, works just like an elastic band. When stretched for a long time, it loosens up. Also, the increased blood flow to the heart enlarges the small blood vessels, opens up several dormant blood vessels lying closed since birth and also helps to form new blood vessels. These form a 'natural bypass’ to the blocked arteries and ensure proper oxygen supply to the heart muscles similar to post cardiac bypass.
Benefits of EECP therapy in treatment for Angina
Well, let’s take a look at all the pain and trauma an ‘angina’ patient has to go through in order to get an idea of the benefits of this natural bypass therapy. Angina symptoms occur when vessels that carry blood to the heart muscle become dysfunctional, and are often narrowed or blocked. It is known that most patients, who suffer from ‘Angina’, complain of discomfort in the chest provoked by mental, physical or emotional stress. They also complain of breathing problem, fatigue, indigestion and other symptoms. The doctors usually control such complains by medication. However, we have also seen that when normal medications for treatment for Angina become ineffective over time, invasive heart bypass surgery is recommended by the doctors as a last resort. But invasive procedures have their problems too – apart from being very expensive, they sometimes fail and pose life risks to the patients. Moreover, who wouldn't like to avoid open heart surgery with its associated risks if an alternative to bypass surgery is available? Here comes the advantage of External Counter-pulsation Therapy (EECP).
The benefits of this natural procedure in treatment for Angina symptoms last for about 3 to 6 years or more after the treatment is over.
How often the patients are administered EECP therapy?
In treatment for Angina the therapy is administered for about 35 hours in all – one hour every day and five days a week for about seven weeks. It can also be done twice a day, needing only 3/4 weeks. External Counter-pulsation Therapy can also be done on patients where heart bypass surgery or angioplasty have failed or for additional benefits for a better and more active lifestyle.
What is the success rate of EECP therapy?
EECP therapy may be a successful alternative for heart bypass surgery, but the outcome of the procedure may vary from case to case. Nevertheless, according to a recent report the response rate for patients suffering from angina is quite high at around 90 percent, with none of the risks of open-heart surgery or angioplasty. The success of External Counter-pulsation Therapy in Angina treatment can be gauged from the fact that in USA Medical Insurance reimbursement rate for this natural heart bypass therapy has increased by about 7% whereas for other procedures like angioplasty and bypass surgery the same has decreased by about 6%.
EECP therapy promises to be on the forefront of cardiac rehabilitation in treatment for Angina and heart failure in the near future. In order to avoid open heart surgery this therapy has been in use for quite sometime as an alternative to heart bypass surgery in many countries such as China, US, Australia, France, Germany and India. The procedure is approved by the statutory authorities in Europe, USA, China and India. China alone boasts now of over 12000 EECP centers while there are more than 900 such centers in USA carrying out EECP treatment and helping patients to avoid heart bypass surgery. This natural heart bypass procedure has proved so effective in Angina treatment for reducing angina symptoms that it is covered under Blue Shield and Blue Cross Medical schemes in USA. Since it improves circulation throughout the body, the Enhanced External Counter-pulsation (EECP) therapy is a cure-all procedure. It is perhaps the most powerful therapy to support individual well-being since having EECP therapy is like adding a second heart to the body which increases blood flow in all the vital organs like the brain, kidneys and intestines.