Nav: Home

UCSF Fresno leading-edge study lends hope to emphysema patients

October 21, 2008

Patients in the Valley with emphysema might soon be breathing a little easier thanks to a new airway bypass study called the Exhale Airways Stents for Emphysema (EASE) trial. The trial principal is Dr. Karl Van Gundy aided by investigators Drs. Michael Peterson, Jose Joseph, Timothy Evans and Kathryn Bilello - all pulmonologists at UCSF Fresno Medical Education Program. The study is a multi-center, international trial that is designed to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of this new and innovative procedure. There are only two other sites administering the trial in California besides UCSF Fresno - UC Davis Medical Center and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

A form of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema is a progressive lung disease that keeps air trapped inside the lungs (not allowing it to escape) resulting in shortness of breath. Since the disease develops gradually over many years, symptoms of emphysema might not occur until irreversible damage has already happened.

"COPD is the fourth leading cause of death in the United States and a significant cause of disability in the world," said Dr. Peterson, who also is chief of medicine at UCSF Fresno Medical Education Program. "Very few new treatments have become available for this disease."

The EASE trial procedure creates new pathways in the walls of the natural airways that connect the damaged inner lung tissue and the larger natural air passages. Dr. Peterson said these new passageways may provide a pathway for the trapped air in the inner lung to escape by "bypassing" the collapsing small airways. These new pathways are created using a special needle through a bronchoscope.

After each new passage is made, a small drug-eluting stent (a wire mesh similar to what is used to keep coronary arteries open in heart disease) is implanted and provides support to keep the passageway open. Dr. Peterson said opening the airway allows the trapped air to escape the lungs, thereby hopefully relieving one of the symptoms of emphysema - shortness of breath.

"A previous large trial (NETT) demonstrated that some patients with emphysema are helped by surgery to reduce the volume of air in the chest. However, this is a complicated and potentially dangerous surgical procedure. The EASE trial is designed to determine if a minimally-invasive approach to reducing lung volume could benefit patients with severe COPD," Dr. Peterson said.

Both Drs. Peterson and Van Gundy are excited to offer this research approach soon to patients in the Central Valley.

"We are currently enrolling patients in this trial and we will continue to enroll patients for next year," Dr. Van Gundy said. To find out more about the study you can go online www.easetrialus.com
-end-


Broncus Technologies

Related Emphysema Articles:

Emphysema treatment could be optimized using network modelling
A unique engineering perspective of emphysema progression in the lung suggests how mechanisms operating at the micromechanical scale could help to predict patient survival and quality of life following treatment -- according to new research published in PLOS Computational Biology.
Sugar element of keratan sulfate halts the progress of emphysema
Using a mouse model, scientists from the RIKEN-Max Planck Joint Research Center for Systems Chemical Biology and a number of other institutes have identified a sugar molecule that reduced the inflammatory response and progress of emphysema, a common component of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
New targeted gene therapy could lead to improved treatment for emphysema
Researchers have developed a new strategy using lung-targeted gene therapy that may lead to improved treatments for inherited diseases including emphysema.
Tiny coils improve quality of life for patients with severe emphysema
Results from a large international trial were presented by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine at the American Thoracic Society International Meeting in San Francisco.
From genes to latrines: Vikings and their worms provide clues to emphysema
In a paper published today in Nature: Scientific Reports a group of researchers led by LSTM have found that the key to an inherited deficiency, predisposing people to emphysema and other lung conditions, could lie in their Viking roots.
Treatment for severe emphysema improves exercise capacity
In preliminary research for patients with severe emphysema, a minimally invasive intervention involving the implantation of coils in the lungs with an endoscope resulted in improved exercise capacity at six months, although with high short-term costs, according to a study in the Jan.
Nanoparticulate carbon black particles tiny culprits that start emphysema
When pathologists perform autopsies on smokers who died with severe emphysema, they find that lungs are black in appearance.
Imaging could improve treatment of people with COPD
Magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography provide important information on the symptoms and exercise capabilities of people with mild-to-moderate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, according to a new study.
Study shows treatment for genetically caused emphysema is effective
A landmark clinical study in the Lancet provides convincing evidence that a frequently overlooked therapy for genetically-caused emphysema is effective and slows the progression of lung disease.
Regular aspirin use may slow progression of early emphysema
Regular use of aspirin may help slow the progression of early emphysema, according to new research presented at the 2015 American Thoracic Society International Conference.

Related Emphysema Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Setbacks
Failure can feel lonely and final. But can we learn from failure, even reframe it, to feel more like a temporary setback? This hour, TED speakers on changing a crushing defeat into a stepping stone. Guests include entrepreneur Leticia Gasca, psychology professor Alison Ledgerwood, astronomer Phil Plait, former professional athlete Charly Haversat, and UPS training manager Jon Bowers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#524 The Human Network
What does a network of humans look like and how does it work? How does information spread? How do decisions and opinions spread? What gets distorted as it moves through the network and why? This week we dig into the ins and outs of human networks with Matthew Jackson, Professor of Economics at Stanford University and author of the book "The Human Network: How Your Social Position Determines Your Power, Beliefs, and Behaviours".