Cath lab

Diagnostic Procedures

Diagnostic Cardiac Catheterisation -

Cardiac Catheterisation is a procedure to examine how well the heart is working. A thin hollow tube called catheter is inserted into a large blood vessel that leads to heart. It is performed to find out the disease of the heart muscle, valves or coronary arteries.

1. Coronary Angiography is done during cardiac catheterization. A contrast dye visible in X-ray is injected through the catheter. X-ray images show the passage of dye in heart arteries. It shows the blockage of arteries

2. Pressure of four chambers of the heart can be measured.

3. Ability of the pumping chambers to contract.

4. Measurement of the oxygen content in the four chambers of the heart by taking blood samples.

5. Defects of valves or chambers of the heart.

Biopsy - A diagnostic procedure to obtain a myocardial tissue sample from the ventricle of the heart aid in the detection of a disease process (i.e., myocarditis, cardiomyopathy, etc.) or to monitor rejection after heart transplant

Therapeutic Procedures

Catheter ablation is the least invasive option, in which a thin, flexible tube is put into a blood vessel in the leg or neck. Then, it's guided to the heart. Heat, cold, or radio energy is used to scar some tissue inside the heart, where the irregular beats are triggered. The treated tissue helps get the heartbeat regular again.

Angioplasty(balloon angioplasty) is a minimally invasive, endovascular procedure to widen narrowed or obstructed arteries or veins, typically to treat arterial atherosclerosis. A deflated balloon attached to a catheter (a balloon catheter) is passed over a guide-wire into the narrowed vessel and then inflated to a fixed size. The balloon forces expansion of the blood vessel and the surrounding muscular wall, allowing an improved blood flow. A stent may be inserted at the time of ballooning to ensure the vessel remains open, and the balloon is then deflated and withdrawn.

Coronary angioplasty is a therapeutic procedure to treat the stenotic (narrowed) coronary arteries of the heart found in coronary heart disease. These stenotic segments are due to the buildup of cholesterol-laden plaques that form due to atherosclerosis. A percutaneous coronary intervention is first performed.

Peripheral angioplasty refers to the use of a balloon to open a blood vessel outside the coronary arteries. It is commonly done to treat atherosclerotic narrowings of the abdomen, leg and renal arteries caused by peripheral artery disease. Often, peripheral angioplasty is used in conjunction with guide wire, peripheral stenting and an atherectomy.

Carotid angioplasty Carotid artery stenosis is treated with angioplasty in a procedure called carotid stenting for patients at high-risk for carotid endarterectomy.

Renal artery angioplasty Atherosclerotic obstruction of the renal artery can be treated with angioplasty with or without stenting of the renal artery. Renal artery stenosis can lead to hypertension and loss of renal function.

Venous angioplasty Angioplasty is occasionally used to treat venous stenosis, such as stenosis of the subclavian vein caused by thoracic outlet syndrome.

Stenting A stent is a small, metal mesh tube that is placed within a coronary artery after balloon angioplasty to prevent the artery from reclosing (restenosis). There are also drug-eluting stents coated with a special medication to further help prevent re-narrowing of the coronary arteries. Like other coronary stents, it is left permanently in the artery, and slowly releases a drug that prevents the build-up of tissue that leads to restenosis.

Septal closure devices A wire mesh device made out of nickel and titanium (Nitinol) and filled with a polyester thread is used to non-surgically close defects in the atrial septum (the wall between the two top chambers of the heart). A patent foramen ovale (PFO) and atrial septal defect (ASD) are two of the common defects that are closed with this technique.

Atherectomy If the plaque found in an artery has hardened and calcified, a cardiologist can use a rotational atherectomy catheter -- an olive-shaped diamond burr which rotates at very high speed -- to pulverize the plaque into harmless microscopic particles that are washed away by the blood stream. A laser atherectomy device could also be used in a similar fashion.

Thrombectomy If the artery is noted to have loose debris within it, there are various types of catheters designed to remove the debris from within the artery prior to either angioplasty or stenting.