Global health technology company Royal Philips has announced the first use of its CavaClear solution for the laser-assisted Inferior Vena Cava (IVC) filter removal in two patients.

The first two patients were successfully treated by Dr. Kush R Desai at Northwestern Medicine, Chicago, and Dr. William T Kuo at Stanford Hospital, Palo Alto.

Dr. Desai treated one of the first patients using CavaClear by removing an IVC filter that was placed nearly 6 months ago, for the treatment of deep vein thromboembolism.

Dr. Desai said: “Millions of patients have IVC filters that are no longer indicated, and CavaClear helps physicians experienced in IVC filter retrieval work towards the goal of safely removing such devices, in line with regulatory guidance.”

Dr. Kuo performed the first procedure using CavaClear to retrieve a chronically embedded IVC filter that was placed more than 16 years ago.

Dr. Kuo said: “Prior to our discovery of the laser technique, pioneered at Stanford, percutaneous removal would have been impossible, but the use of CavaClear allowed us to achieve successful removal within minutes – highlighting the first ever use of CavaClear to remove a chronic filter implant.”

CavaClear provides an effective, minimally-invasive solution for embedded IVC filters, reduce the risk of filter-related complications and improve physicians’ workflow performance, said Philips.

IVC filters are used to treat patients with venous thromboembolism, a condition where blood clots are formed in the deep veins of the leg and groin and travel to other part of the body.

The filters are placed in the inferior vena cava to capture blood clots that move into the lungs. However, IVC filters are often associated with long-term complications.

The company has received FDA De Novo approval for its CavaClear IVC Filter Removal Laser Sheath in December last year.

CavaClear leverages circumferential tissue ablation technology to help capture the filter within seconds of laser activation.

The approach is said to increase the efficiency removal procedure and lower the associated costs by minimising the number of attempts required to retrieve an embedded filter.

Also, its simple and safe design will enable physicians to easily integrate CavaClear into their workflow and reduce the need for high-force retrievals, said Philips.

Philips image guided therapy chief medical officer Atul Gupta said: “We are deeply moved to see Philips IVC Filter Removal Laser Sheath, CavaClear, have a positive impact on the lives of patients, and the ability to provide physicians with access to a safe, effective and efficient option for advanced IVC filter removal.

“These are just the first of many successful cases to come, and a testament of the Philips commitment to innovating procedures and solutions with physician collaboration to improve patient outcomes.”