Why It Is Done?
Emergency angioplasty is usually the first choice of treatment for a heart attack if the patient is:
- Having a heart attack
- Has frequent or severe angina that is not responding to medicine and lifestyle changes
- Has evidence of severely reduced blood flow (ischemia) to an area of heart muscle caused by one or more narrowed coronary arteries
- Has a narrowed or blocked artery that is likely to be treated successfully with angioplasty.
How does it help?
- Angioplasty gets the blood flowing back to the heart. It opens a coronary artery that is narrowed or blocked during a heart attack by a blood clot, or fat and calcium from a ruptured plaque.
How is angioplasty done?
Angioplasty is only done in a super speciality hospital with expertise in cardiac care.
A Cardiac surgeon inserts the catheter ( a thin, soft tube) into a blood vessel in the groin or wrist, carefully guiding the catheter through blood vessels until it reaches coronary arteries on the heart.
Cardiac catheterisation (coronary angiogram)
Using the catheter, the cardiac surgeon injects a dye that contains iodine into the arteries
to find the narrowing or blockages in the coronary arteries. The dye makes the coronary arteries visible on a digital X-ray screen. If there is a blockage, a tiny balloon is moved through the catheter. The pressure from the inflated balloon presses the plaque against the wall of the artery, improving blood flow. The doctor may also use the balloon to place a stent in the artery. In some instances, the surgeon may use a small device that is like a vacuum, to remove loose pieces of blood clots from the artery.
What is a stent?
A stent is a small, expandable tube which similar to a woven mesh. It is permanently inserted during angioplasty to keep the artery open. The average hospital stay for angioplasty is 1 to 2 days for uncomplicated procedures.
The decision to do an angioplasty is taken after consideration of many factors. Reaching a Super speciality hospital with cardiac experts, Cardiac ICU and an Emergency Centre are most critical during a heart attack.
Regular cardiac check-ups are essential for heart health.
Please consult a doctor for medical decisions.
Contact our Cardiac Care experts for further information.