In this prospective, randomized controlled study, we aim to compare the performance outcomes of standard catheters with the radial artery–specific catheter. Over the past decade, transradial cardiac catheterization has gained widespread popularity because of its low complication rates compared with transfemoral access. Operators have the choice of using either standard catheters (used for both transfemoral and transradial approach, with need for separate catheter use for either right or left coronary artery engagement) or a dedicated radial artery catheter, which is specifically designed to engage both coronary arteries through radial artery access. A total of 110 consecutive patients who underwent coronary angiography at our institution from March 2015 to April 2015 were prospectively randomized to either radial artery–specific Tiger catheter (5Fr; Terumo Interventional Systems, Somerset, New Jersey) versus standard Judkins left and right catheters (5Fr R4, L4; Cordis Corporation, Miami, Florida). The end points of the study included fluoroscopy time, dose-area product, contrast volume used, and total procedure time for the coronary angiography. A total of 57 patients (52%) were randomized to radial artery–specific catheter and 53 (48%) to the standard catheter. Tiger catheter was associated with significantly lower fluoroscopy time (184 ± 91 vs 238 ± 131 seconds, p = 0.015), which was statistically significant. Other outcome measures such as dose-area product (2,882.4 ± 1,471.2 vs 3,524.6 ± 2,111.7 Gy·cm2, p = 0.07), total contrast volume (48.1 ± 16.1 vs 53.4 ± 18.5 ml, p = 0.114), and total procedure time (337 ± 382 vs 434 ± 137 seconds, p = 0.085) were also lower in single-catheter group, but it did not reach statistical significance. A total of 8 patients (14%) were crossed over from radial-specific catheter arm to standard catheter arm because of substandard image quality and difficulty in coronary engagement. Six patients had to be switched to femoral access (3 in each group) secondary to radial artery spasm. In conclusion, the radial artery–specific catheter was shown to have significantly lower fluoroscopy times but higher failure rates compared with the standard catheters.
Am J Cardiol. 2016 Aug 1;118(3):357-61.