The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved St Jude Medical's Amplatzer Vascular Plug 4.

Amplatzer Plug is delivered using a standard diagnostic catheter and is designed for use in transcatheter embolization procedures within the peripheral vasculature.

Prior to deployment, the AVP 4 may be recaptured and repositioned to provide full cross-sectional vessel coverage allowing physicians to reroute blood flow by blocking abnormal vessels.

University of Minnesota Medical Center spokesperson Jafar Golzarian said the Amplatzer Vascular Plugs have been beneficial in precisely targeting specific vessels for embolization.

"With the AMPLATZER Vascular Plug 4 we now have the ability to use a diagnostic catheter to deliver the device, which means that patients in need of embolization of smaller, more tortuous vessels can benefit from this technology," Golzarian added.

St Jude Medical cardiovascular division president Frank Callaghan said, "This technology simplifies the peripheral embolization procedure for physicians by eliminating the need for catheter exchanges and blocking or redirecting blood flow through the peripheral vessels in a more efficient manner than with surgical clips or embolic coils."

The Amplatzer Vascular Plug 4 received CE mark approval in July 2009.