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Angiography

Angiography is particularly related to heart and is a medical imaging technique which is used to check the lumen or inside of blood vessels and different organs of the body. Angiography is about veins, arteries and heart chambers. Moreover, this procedure is commonly performed in order to identify narrowing of vessels if any. In simpler terms if we talk about angiography it is a kind of an X-raywhich is done to image blood vessels and with the help of this the doctor checks whether the vessels are blocked, tapered, diseased or engorged.

Types of Angiography
As far as the types of angiography are concerned, these are mentioned below:

  • Cerebral angiography
  • Visceral
  • Left heart ventriculography
  • Aortography
  • Peripheral angiography
  • Retinal angiography
  • Coronary angiography
  • Magnetic resonance angiography
  • Lymphangiography
  • Right heart ventriculography
  • Pulmonary angiography

Catheter Angiography Procedure

As the name suggests a catheter is used along with an injection of contrast material in order to examine the blood vessels in specific areas of the body. It is checked for any abnormalities including aneurysms and atherosclerosis (plaque). By making use of the catheter both diagnosis and treatment can be done in a single procedure.

This type of angiography is performed by making use of the following:

  • X-rays with catheters
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • Computed tomography

An interventional radiologist is called to carry out this procedure and if simultaneously angioplasty is to be performed then a cardiologist will also be there.

Step 1 – The patient is made to lie flat on his back. A continuous check is kept on his heart rate and blood pressure.

Step 2 –Local anesthesia will be given and then a skin incision will be made. The catheter is usually inserted through the femoral artery inside the groin.

Step 3 –The long flexible tube is then inserted and taken through the blood stream to the correct artery. The entire procedure is continuously monitored through fluoroscope which is an x-ray imaging device.

Step 4 – As and when the catheter reaches the exact location the contrast agent is then injected in order to clearly see the blood vessels. X-ray shorts are then taken from varied angles.

Step 5 –The dye then flow through the arteries, the doctor studies that flow and tries to find any blockages.

Step 6 –The catheter is removed after the X-ray is being taken.

Step 7 –Once the procedure is over the patient must stay with his back for 6 to 8 hours.

Common Uses of the Catheter Angiography

This procedure is commonly used to examine the blood vessels in specific areas of the body which includes:

  • Neck
  • Brain
  • Pelvis
  • Abdomen
  • Hands and arms
  • Legs and feet
  • Chest

Benefits & Risks of Angiography

Benefits:

  • The need of treatment may get eliminated
  • A detailed and clear picture of blood vessels is provided with the help of catheter angiography
  • After an x ray examination no radiation remains in the body of the patient
  • In the diagnostic range of this exam. X-rays are usually not harmful

Risks:

  • Slight chances of cancer is there from this excessive exposure to radiation
  • Any possibility of a women being pregnant while this procedure is carried out, they should immediately inform the technologist.
  • A blood clot might occur around the tip of catheter
  • If you are a diabetic patient or suffering from any kidney ailment, the kidneys may get injured due to the contrast material

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