Cardiac/Peripheral Catheterization & Intervention New Hyde Park, NY
Know The Language
Cardiac catheterization is the procedure whereby catheters are inserted into the heart to take certain measurements and take pictures.
Angiography is obtaining pictures of any artery in the body.
Coronary angiography is obtaining pictures of coronary arteries (arteries supplying oxygenated blood to the heart muscle). This can be performed by invasive (inserting catheters into the body) or non-invasive techniques like a CT or MRI scan. Invasive coronary angiography is still considered the best technique for diagnosing blockage in the coronary arteries.
Peripheral angiography is obtaining pictures of arteries supplying the extremities, most commonly the legs. This is performed by inserting catheters into the vessel in question and obtaining pictures.
Intervention implies mechanical treatment to the correct blockage in the blood vessel. There are several kinds of interventions in adult cardiology: most commonly angioplasty (opening up a blockage with balloon catheters) and stenting (insertion of metal scaffolding into the blood vessel to keep it open).
Cardiac catheterization and intervention is typically performed by inserting catheters into the heart via a blood vessel of the leg or arm under local anesthesia. Most patients receive conscious sedation (this puts one to twilight sleep) during the procedure. At Brookhaven Heart, we offer a full range of diagnostic and interventional cardiac catheterization services.
Before your cardiac catheterization surgery takes place, your physician will perform a comprehensive physical examination. Your doctor will write down your medical history, and they will explain a detailed description of the procedure and its risks. This is the time you should ask any and all questions that may concern you. Depending on whether your doctor discovers a blockage, they may choose to perform an angioplasty. Again, they will discuss this entire procedure with you beforehand so you know exactly what to expect.
Patients are required to fast for six to eight hours before the procedure. This means no food and no liquids. With this step complete and the procedure coming up, we will perform a blood test and electrocardiogram. Lastly, the final step in the procedure’s preparation period, you will receive an intravenous line with fluids and medication. You will receive a mild sedative before the procedure, either in pill form or through the intravenous line.
Risks of Catheterization
As with any procedure performed on your heart or blood vessels, cardiac catheterization comes with its risks and rewards. Major complications can occur, but these are exceedingly rare. Some of the most common risks include…
- Heart attack
- Damage to the artery
- Allergic reactions to medication or dye
- Kidney damage
- Blood clots
- Irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias)
Before the procedure takes place, your physician will discuss any and all risks and their chances to occur. Some are more common and can be easily dismissed by your doctor, but others will require immediate medical attention. Pay attention to your body’s signals and act accordingly should symptoms begin to arise once the procedure is complete. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, speak with your doctor before undergoing cardiac catheterization surgery. You should never feel afraid of speaking with your physician when you notice a potential problem.
What to Expect
In preparation for cardiac or peripheral catheterization, your doctor gives instructions, which includes information about the procedure, reasons for its recommendation, benefits and risks and alternative treatments, including no treatments. We will answer any questions you may have and then you will be asked to sign an informed consent. Also, some routine blood work will be ordered in preparation for the cardiac or peripheral catheterization.
You will be given written instruction as to where and when to report to the hospital. Do not bring jewelry or other valuables. If you normally wear dentures, glasses or a hearing assist device, plan to wear them during the procedure to assist with communication.
- Do not eat or drink for 6 hours before the procedure.
- Ask your doctor what medications should be taken on the day of your test. If you are a diabetic taking insulin or other medications, ask your physician how to adjust your medications the day of your test. Also, if you are on blood thinners like Coumadin, inform your doctor.
- Tell your doctor and/or nurses if you are allergic to anything, especially iodine, shellfish, X-ray dye, penicillin-type medications, latex or rubber products (such as rubber gloves or balloons).
- If you have a kidney disease, your doctor may prescribe some medications to take, starting from the day prior to procedure.
- If you have had prior allergies to iodine containing dye, your doctor will prescribe medications starting the day before to reduce the chances of having such allergic reactions during the test.
Once you reach the hospital, you will be asked to change into a gown and lie on a hospital bed. An intravenous line will be placed, blood may be drawn and IV fluids may be started. You will be called for the procedure when the room is ready.
After the procedure, if catheterization reveals no significant blockages, and no untoward events happen, you can expect to be discharged home in 4-6 hours. If you have blockages requiring further treatment, like angioplasty or stents, then you will be admitted to the hospital after the procedure. When you are able to return home, arrange for a companion to bring you home.
After the procedure, the doctor will discuss the results with you and the family member whom you authorize.
You will be given written instructions at the time of discharge regarding any restrictions in activity, resuming medications and work.
Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions
Catheters are used not only for just study and diagnose problems, but they can also be used to repair the heart. A small tube or thin hollow flexible tube is inserted into the artery of the leg or arm while the patient is under sedation. Through x-ray imaging, the doctor can guide the catheter to the place where it is needed. There are many procedures that are performed with the help of catheters. The prognosis of cath procedures and cardiovascular interventions are good when done by an experienced doctor. Some of these cardiovascular interventions include the following:
- Melody valve procedure
- Dilation of arteries, heart valves, and veins
- Atrial septal defect closure
- Ventricular septal defect closure