Guide extension catheters: Review of technology and future directions

Author(s): Raghuram Chava, Sai Rohit Mekala, Jagadeesh K Kalavakunta, Tim A Fischell

Although Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) has revolutionized the management of CAD, the deliverability of devices including balloons, specialty balloons, stents, atherectomy catheters, thrombectomy devices, and intravascular lithotripsy devices has become a common challenge faced by interventional cardiologists. Guide Extension Catheters (GECs) have been developed and are now widely used to create improved backup support to allow the advancement of interventional equipment required for the PCI.

Improved lesion preparation, plaque modification (e.g., with atherectomy), and Guide Extension Catheters (GEC), also called as Mother-Child Technique, has proven critical to procedural success in complex cases. In this review, we discuss the role and limitations of current guide extension devices, with a brief discussion of next-generation GEC.