How do the coils work ? The Coils are made of memory-shape Nitinol (commonly used in medical implants). They are straightened and placed into the areas of diseased tissue, recovering their coiled shape when deployed, and taking up loose lung tissue which contributes to breathing problems. Multiple Coils are placed in each lung, to achieve optimal lung volume reduction as well as optimal re-tensioning of the surrounding lung tissue.
Treatment is done under general anaesthesia. The coils have a size between 100 and 150 mm (50 to 70 mm when deployed). They are placed in the lung via a small catheter inserted through the working in channel of a fiber-optic bronchoscope (flexible apparatus which is introduce via the mouth and allows the bronchial tree to be examined).
By compressing diseased zones of the lung, the coils achieve a reduction of the volume of these zones while also improving the elastic recoil of the lung, which allows the lung to more efficiently move air in and out.
The distal part of a pencil is shown by comparison to give an idea of the size the coils
Eight to 10 coils are placed in the target zone of the lung (the most diseased zone) under visual control and radiological control. The average duration of the procedure is 30 to 60 minutes. Only one lung is treated at a time. Contralateral treatment (the other side) of the lung is done during a second treatment 1 to 3 months later. The average length of hospital day is about 3 days
Chest X ray of the lungs before and after placement of coïls first on the right side, second on the left side