Shishehbor MH, Zeller T, Werner M, et al. Randomized Trial of Chocolate Touch Compared With Lutonix Drug-Coated Balloon in Femoropopliteal Lesions (Chocolate Touch Study). Circulation. 2022 May 31;145(22):1645-1654. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.122.059646. Epub 2022 Apr 4. (Original study)

BACKGROUND: First-generation drug-coated balloons (DCBs) have significantly reduced the rate of restenosis compared with balloon angioplasty alone; however, high rates of bailout stenting and dissections persist. The Chocolate Touch DCB is a nitinol constrained balloon designed to reduce acute vessel trauma and inhibit neointima formation and restenosis.

METHODS: Patients with claudication or ischemic rest pain (Rutherford class 2-4) and superficial femoral or popliteal disease (=70% stenosis) were randomized 1:1 to Chocolate Touch or Lutonix DCB at 34 sites in the United States, Europe, and New Zealand. The primary efficacy end point was DCB success, defined as primary patency at 12 months (peak systolic velocity ratio <2.4 by duplex ultrasound without clinically driven target lesion revascularization in the absence of clinically driven bailout stenting). The primary safety end point was freedom from major adverse events at 12 months, a composite of target limb-related death, major amputation, or reintervention. Both primary end points were tested for noninferiority, and if met, sequential superiority testing for efficacy followed by safety was prespecified. An independent clinical events committee, and angiographic and duplex ultrasound core laboratories blinded to treatment allocation reviewed all end points.

RESULTS: A total of 313 patients were randomized to Chocolate Touch (n=152) versus Lutonix DCB (n=161). Follow-up at 1 year was available in 94% of patients. The mean age was 69.4±9.5 years, the average lesion length was 78.1±46.9 mm, and 46.2% had moderate-to-severe calcification. The primary efficacy rates of DCB success at 12 months was 78.8% (108/137) with Chocolate Touch and 67.7% (88/130) with Lutonix DCB (difference, 11.1% [95% CI, 0.6-21.7]), meeting noninferiority (Pnoninferiority<0.0001) and sequential superiority (Psuperiority=0.04). The primary safety event rate was 88.9% (128/144) with Chocolate Touch and 84.6% (126/149) with Lutonix DCB (Pnoninferiority<0.001; Psuperiority=0.27).

CONCLUSIONS: In this prospective, multicenter, randomized trial, the second-generation Chocolate Touch DCB met both noninferiority end points for efficacy and safety and was more effective than Lutonix DCB at 12 months for the treatment of femoropopliteal disease.

REGISTRATION: URL: https://www.

CLINICALTRIALS: gov; Unique identifier: NCT02924857.

Discipline Area Score
Physician 6 / 7
Comments from MORE raters

Physician rater

While the information is new and useful in as much as it demonstrates a well designed trial comparing two treatments of (mostly) claudication, the outcomes are similar to prior studies. This is limited by the short follow-up and a very select patient population. There is no cost-benefit analysis (including patient-centered outcomes) to assist with determining whether these expensive treatments are ultimately worth the cost.

Physician rater

Very interesting study regarding a potential interesting and under-considered device.
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