June 9, 2004 at 4:29 PM CDT - Updated June 28 at 4:05 AM
by Michelle Mortensen
David Davis hates being cooped up in a hospital bed. He'd rather be out fishing. But excruciating pain in his leg is keeping him from enjoying life.
"You just get to where you can't walk very far."
Mr. Davis suffers from peripheral artery disease, or P.A.D.. Several of the arteries in his leg are clogged up with plaque, causing him severe pain.
"Very painful, very painful. Your whole calf feels tight and you just have to sit down."
For years he just lived with the pain, but thanks to new technology, Mr. Davis will be pain free in just a few hours. His doctor, Jeffrey Carr, will remove the plaque from his arteries with a tiny catheter that has a small blade inside no larger than a grain of rice.
"It shaves off the blockage and puts it in the tube and removes it from the body."
Dr. Carr says this new method of cleaning out arteries in the leg is more effective than any other option available today. Plus, it's fast. As soon as the plaque is gone, blood starts flowing freely, which means when Mr. Davis wakes up, he should be pain free.
There’s another benefit, too.
"The patient can go home the same day or the following day."
And that's good news for Mr. Davis who can't wait to walk and get back to the great outdoors.