Purpose: To report a percutaneous intravascular cracking with a guidewire tail (PICKING) technique to longitudinally crack the underlying calcification and facilitate the balloon catheter passage for the treatment of severely calcified chronic occlusions in the infrainguinal artery. Materials and Methods: Three patients underwent PICKING technique between November 2014 and March 2017. The PICKING technique with the stiff tail of 0.018-inch guidewire in the straight configuration was considered in cases of failed passage of the smallest balloon catheter because of the underlying severely calcified occlusion following passage of 0.014-inch guidewire. Results: All three patients were complicated by end-stage renal disease on hemodialysis. Treated vessels were superficial femoral artery in two cases and anterior tibial artery in one case. In all cases, successful passage and dilatation of the balloon catheter were achieved, and significant improvements in clinical symptoms were observed following subsequent optimal balloon angioplasty or stenting. Conclusions: The PICKING technique could increase the potential of endovascular solution for the treatment of severely calcified chronic occlusions in the infrainguinal artery.
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