Cardiologists, or heart experts, utilize cardiac catheterization to check heart function and diagnose cardiovascular diseases.
A catheter, a long, narrow tube, is placed into an artery or vein in your upper thigh, neck, or arm during cardiac catheterization. This catheter is inserted into your blood vessel and guided to your heart.
Your doctor can use the catheter to perform diagnostic tests once it is in place. A dye, for example, can be injected through the catheter, allowing your doctor to view the veins and chambers of your heart using an X-ray machine.
Cardiac catheterization is often conducted in a hospital by a cardiologist specializing in the procedure, with the support of a team of medical specialists. Connect to the best cardiologist in Hyderabad for heart-related problems and cardiac catheterization procedures.
What Is Cardiac Catheterization?
Your doctor will insert a tiny, flexible, hollow tube known as a ‘catheter’ into a blood vessel in the arm, neck, or groin during cardiac catheterization (also known as cardiac Cath). The catheter is then passed into the blood vessel, the aorta, and the heart. Several tests may be performed once the catheter is in place. For example, your doctor can insert the catheter tip into different areas of the heart to assess pressures within the chambers or obtain blood samples to measure oxygen levels.
Your doctor can direct the catheter into the coronary arteries and inject contrast dye to ensure blood flow. The coronary arteries are the vessels which carry the blood to the heart muscle. And this procedure is called coronary angiography.
Other types of cardiac catheterization that may be performed during or after this procedure include:
- Angioplasty- During this treatment, your doctor can inflate a little balloon at the catheter’s tip. This forces any plaque accumulation against the arterial wall, increasing blood flow through the vessel.
- Stent insertion- To keep an artery open, your doctor will inflate a tiny metal mesh coil or tube in the heart at the end of the catheter.
- Fractional flow reserve- This is a pressure management technique used in catheterization to determine the amount of blockage in an artery.
- Intravascular ultrasound (IVUS)- This test uses a computer and a transducer to generate images of blood arteries using ultrasonic sound waves. The doctor can observe and measure the inside of the blood vessels using IVUS.
- A small piece of cardiac tissue (called a biopsy)- A little tissue sample may be removed by your doctor and examined under a microscope for abnormalities.
You will be awake during the test, but a tiny quantity of sedating medication will be administered before the operation to make you more comfortable.
Purpose Of Cardiac Catheterization
Your doctor may use a cardiac catheter to assist in diagnosing the following heart conditions:
- Atherosclerosis- This is caused by fatty materials and other compounds in the bloodstream gradually blocking the arteries.
- Cardiomyopathy- This is a cardiac enlargement caused by thickening or weakness of the heart muscle.
- Heart defect during birth- Congenital heart defects are flaws in one or more cardiac structures that arise during fetal development, such as a ventricular septal defect that is a hole in between the wall of two lower chambers of the heart. This could result in irregular blood flow within the heart.
- Heart failure- This disorder causes congestion, fluid buildup in the blood vessels and lungs, and also edema in the feet, ankles and other body regions since the heart muscle have grown too weak to pump blood well.
- Heart valves disease- Failure of one or more heart valves can disrupt blood flow within the heart.
If you have lately experienced cardiac catheterization indications, you may need a cardiac cath:
- Chest ache (angina)
- Breathing difficulty
- Extreme exhaustion
If a screening check, such as an electrocardiogram (ECG) or stress test, indicates that a heart condition needs to be investigated further, your doctor may prescribe a cardiac catheterization.
Another reason for this procedure is to assess blood flow to the heart muscle if any of the following events occur:
- The heart attack
- Coronary artery bypass grafting
- Coronary angioplasty (using a balloon or other procedure to open a coronary artery) or stent implantation in heart (a tiny metal coil or tube placed within an artery to keep the artery open).
Your doctor may also recommend a cardiac cath for other reasons. Connect to the best hospital for heart surgery in Hyderabad if you experience any of the above conditions.
Procedure For Cardiac Catheterization
Before the procedure
- You will be given guidelines on what to eat and drink 24 hours following the test.
- You will usually be ordered not to drink or eat for 6 to 8 hours before the cath treatment.
- Inform your doctor about any medications (including over-the-counter, herbal, and vitamin supplements) you are taking. The doctor may instruct you not to take them before the cath procedure. However, do not stop taking your medication unless your doctor instructs you to.
- If you are allergic to anything, notably iodine, shellfish, latex, or rubber goods, medications such as penicillin, or X-ray dye, notify your doctor or nurse.
During the procedure
A doctor carries out the cardiac catheterization procedure with expertise and a team of nurses and technologists. The technique is carried out in a hospital’s cardiac catheterization (Cath) lab.
- A nurse will insert an IV (intravenous) line into a vein in your arms (limb) before the cath procedure so you can receive medicine (sedative) to help you relax. Still, you will be awake and able to follow directions during the process.
- To numb the needle puncture site, a local anesthetic is frequently administered.
- The doctor will inject a needle into a big blood vessel through your skin. Next, the vessel will be implanted via a little straw-sized tube (called a sheath). Next, the doctor gently inserts a catheter (a long and thin tube) into your vessel through the sheath. The position of this catheter as it is inserted through the major blood vessels and into the heart will be shown on a television screen. You may feel a little pressure in your groin, but it should not be painful.
- Various instruments may be inserted at the catheter’s tip. They include tools for measuring blood pressure in each heart chamber and blood vessels related to the heart, viewing the interior of blood vessels, taking blood samples from various areas of the heart, and removing a tissue sample (biopsy) from inside the heart.
- Angiography is a process that uses a catheter to inject a dye that may be seen on X-rays.
- Using a catheter to clear a restricted or blocked artery is known as angioplasty or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).
- Valvuloplasty is a surgery that uses a catheter to expand a narrowed heart valve orifice.
- The doctor will remove the catheters and sheath. To prevent bleeding, your nurse will apply pressure to the area. A specific closing device is sometimes employed.
After the procedure
You will be spending a few hours in a recovery room. You must lie flat throughout this time.
- To halt the bleeding, pressure will be administered to the puncture site.
- You cannot get out of bed because you must maintain your leg straight.
- Your heart rate and other vital signs (such as pulse and blood pressure) will be monitored during your recovery.
- Any pain, swelling, bleeding at the puncture site, and chest trouble should be reported.
- You will be given written instructions on what to do at home before you leave the hospital.
Risk And Complications
The following are some of the hazards connected with cardiac catheterization:
- Bruising or bleeding when the catheter is inserted into the body (in the groin, arm, neck, or wrist)
- Pain in the area where the catheter is inserted into the body
- Infection where the catheter is inserted in the body, causing a Blood clot or damage to the blood vessel into which the catheter is inserted
- Heart rhythm problems (usually temporary)
Rare heart conditions are as follows:
- Ischemia (poor blood flow to the heart), chest discomfort, or a heart attack
- A coronary artery becomes suddenly blocked.
- A tear in the artery’s lining
- Kidney damage caused by the dye used.
Because of the potential fetal harm from a cardiac cath, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or suspect you might be. Pregnancy radiation exposure may result in birth abnormalities. Also, tell your doctor know if you are lactating or breastfeeding.
Cardiac catheterization is a treatment that involves guiding a thin, flexible tube (catheter) through a blood vessel to the heart to detect or treat certain heart diseases, such as clogged arteries or irregular heartbeats. Cardiac catheterization provides the doctor vital information about the heart muscle, valves, and blood arteries.
Doctors can perform various heart tests, administer therapies, or remove a sample of heart tissue for evaluation during cardiac catheterization. Cardiac catheterization is used in several heart diseases therapies, such as coronary angioplasty and coronary stenting.
During cardiac catheterization, you will usually be awake but will be given drugs to help you relax. As a result, cardiac catheterization has a rapid recovery time and a low risk of complications. Connect to the best heart surgery hospitals in Hyderabad for the best cardiac catheterization procedure for quick recovery and a healthy heart.