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Heart attack detector: Melbourne researchers develop game-changing device

Ross and Russel
Article image for Heart attack detector: Melbourne researchers develop game-changing device

Melbourne researchers have developed a ground-breaking new tool which can identify those at highest risk of heart attack.

More than 60,000 heart attacks happen in Australia every year and about 30 per cent of them are fatal.

But heart researcher at the Baker Institute, Professor Karlheinz Peter, says doctors often “don’t know who is at risk”.

While current tests can identify plaque built up on artery walls, there is no effective way of measuring how stable the plaques are, and how high their risk of rupturing and causing a heart attack is.

A new laser developed by researchers at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute and Swinburne University can differentiate between plaques that are stable and unstable for the first time.

Cardiologist Dr Ross Walker says it’s a game-changer.

“Until now we’ve had really no good way of determining whether we have stable or unstable plaques,” he told Neil Mitchell.

Press PLAY below for more from Dr Walker.

 

Professer Peter says the laser has been funded by the government so far, but more money is needed to make it widely available to patients.

“We probably need another $6 million or $7 million to really bring it into patients,” he told Ross and Russel.

“We have all the expertise here in Victoria and often we miss the money … to get running.”

Press PLAY below for more from Professor Peter.

Ross and Russel
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