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Interventional Cardiology

The field of Interventional Cardiology includes non-surgical treatment of heart conditions such as coronary artery disease, valvular heart disease and congenital heart disease.

Cardiac Intervention

Coronary Angioplasty

This medical procedure improves blood flow to the heart by using a balloon to open blockages in coronary arteries. A catheter with an empty balloon on its tip is guided into the narrowed part of the artery. The balloon is then filled with air to flatten the plaque against the artery wall and open the blockage.

Angioplasty may be used to:

  • Improve symptoms of coronary artery disease, such as angina and shortness of breath.
  • Reduce damage to the heart muscle from a heart attack.
  • Angioplasty is used during a heart attack to open the blockage and restore blood flow through the artery.
  • Reduce the risk of death in some patients.
Coronary Stents

A stent is a small wire mesh tube used to help keep coronary arteries open after angioplasty. Once the artery is open, a second balloon catheter with a stent on its tip is inserted into the artery and inflated, locking the stent into place and forming a scaffold. This holds the artery open. The stent stays in the artery permanently, holds it open, improves blood flow to the heart muscle and relieves symptoms (usually chest pain). Over 70 percent of coronary angioplasty procedures also include stenting.

Vascular Intervention

Atherectomy

With this procedure, a catheter is inserted into the body and advanced through an artery until it reaches the blocked area. Plaque is then removed from arteries using a laser catheter, or a rotating shaver on the end of a catheter. Balloon angioplasty or stenting may be used after an atherectomy.

Balloon Angioplasty

This medical procedure improves blood flow to the heart by using a balloon to open blockages in arteries. A catheter with an empty balloon on its tip is guided into the narrowed part of the artery. The balloon is then filled with air to flatten the plaque against the artery wall and open the blockage.

Stenting

A stent is a small wire mesh tube used to help keep arteries open after angioplasty. Once the artery is open, a second balloon catheter with a stent on its tip is inserted into the artery and inflated, locking the stent into place and forming a scaffold. This holds the artery open. The stent stays in the artery permanently, holds it open, improves blood flow to the heart muscle and relieves symptoms (usually chest pain).

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