Cardiac stent is a tiny tube that is inserted into the blood vessels supplying blood to the heart in case they get blocked or are narrowed. The stent restores the blood supply to the heart. Cardiac stenting is indicated in Unstable Angina & Myocardial Infarction.
Till now only a few countries have the required facilities to make this small yet complex & technical piece of bio-medical equipment, Pakistan due to a high prevalence of cardiac diseases is a major importer of cardiac stents, imported stents cost from Rs. 35,000-55,000 for bare metal stents and Rs 75,000-125,000 for drug eluting stents making the procedure pretty costly for patients from low-middle income group.
|Cardiac stent model – C WSJ|
Dr Murtaza Najabat Ali and his team working at N-ovative Health Technologies (NHT) at NUST has now succeeded in bringing locally manufactured stents in the market with cost-effectiveness as their main emphasis.
According to Ali the journey from product conception to bringing it to market was a long & arduous but rewarding, considering the plight of patients that were deprived of treatment due to exorbitant costs.
Another challenge was to ensure adequate safety & quality and gain trust among the interventional cardiologists who were initially a bit sceptical about locally made stents. Trials of the stents were conducted in NICVD, Karachi & RIC, Rawalpindi before being allowed regulatory approvals.
Heinz Schade GmbH is the german partner in the project which also carried out extensive tests and found the equipment to be safe & of good quality.
The company has launched 3 products & also announced their prices in the local market
- Bare Metal stents – Rs. 15,000
- Drug Eluting stents – Rs. 35,000-40,000
- Angioplasty balloon catheter- Rs. 10,000