Interventional Cardiology: FAQs
Interventional cardiology deals with minimally invasive, non-surgical interventions for different heart problems. Patients can get a diagnosis of heart and vascular problems while avoiding surgical procedures with options like angioplasty and valve repair or replacement. The following are some frequently asked questions about this field of cardiology.
What is interventional cardiology?
Interventional cardiology deals primarily with catheter-based intervention for structural cardiovascular conditions. Most of the treatments are done on the cardiovascular system, which comprises the heart, veins, and arteries. Professionals in this field typically treat patients with a minimally invasive approach, mostly using small incisions without needing large tools inside the body.
What conditions are covered under interventional cardiology?
This field mostly covers the treatment of vascular disease, coronary artery disease, and acquired structural heart disease. The intervention can test and treat coronary heart disease if the cardiologist thinks it might be the cause of ischemic heart disease, which refers to constricted arteries caused by heart issues. The conditions may also range from stable angina to heart attacks.
Interventional cardiology involves non-surgical treatments with stents and balloons and conducting minimally invasive testing of the coronary artery with pressure wires, optical coherent tomography (OCT), and intravascular ultrasound (IVUS). These procedures are all completed using a catheter passed through the artery around the wrist or groin following local anesthesia administration.
What preparation is necessary for the procedure?
The procedure is usually handled on an outpatient basis, but sometimes, some patients may require an overnight hospital stay. Before treatment, the patient may be asked to use aspirin and clopidogrel. A day or two ahead, patients will need to avoid using blood-thinning meds or metformin for diabetes.
The patient will require blood tests, total blood count, and kidney function tests because the dye used during coronary angiography can affect kidney functions. Generally, patients will need to avoid eating or drinking two hours before the treatment begins since a local anesthetic is involved.
How effective is interventional cardiology?
Another primary term for interventional cardiology is percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), where professionals treat a coronary blockage or tightening with metallic stents and drug-coated balloons. The processes work effectively to stop angina symptoms and enhancing heart functions. Generally, interventional cardiology is safe with minimal risk of complications.
What is involved in aftercare?
Recovery after the procedure is simple. Patients would have a minor needle puncture wound if the process occurred via the radial artery. The doctor will apply plastic bandages for compression, which will be in place for two to three hours after the treatment to prevent any bleeding. If the groin femoral artery were used instead, the doctor would seal the hole with a collagen plug called an angio-seal.
After cardiac catheterization, patients will be transferred to the recovery room to lie down. Patients may be advised not to drive, so they will need to arrange for transport home. Also, the doctor will provide aftercare instructions to ease the recovery process.
Interventional cardiology is safe and highly effective. If you have more questions or concerns, feel free to contact the office.
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