Angioplasty & Stent

X-Ray Medical Group’s interventional and neurointerventional radiologists offer a variety of procedures to treat disease of the blood vessels.  These procedures are performed at Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa, California, and include angioplasty, stent placement, atherectomy, thrombolysis, embolization and cavel filter placement.

What is Angioplasty and when is it performed?

Angioplasty is a procedure designed to treat narrowed or blocked arteries or veins almost anywhere in the body.  The procedure is performed in conjunction with angiography (see “Angiograhy”).  Intravenous sedative medications and local anesthetic agents are given to assure patient comfort.  A small plastic tube (catheter) is placed into an artery or vein, usually in the groin or arm.  Using a fluoroscopy (x-ray) camera, the catheter is positioned at a narrowed or blocked blood vessel.  A balloon mounted at the end of the catheter is inflated to open the artery or vein and the catheter is then removed.  The procedure is performed when narrowing or blockages in a blood vessel produce problems such as leg pain with walking, swelling of an extremity, high blood pressure, poor kidney function, abdominal pain, or stroke symptoms.

What is Stent Placement and when is it performed?

Stent placement is a technique related to angioplasty.  A specialized metallic tube, the stent, is left in place within a blood vessel treated with angioplasty.  In certain situations this increases the likelihood that the blood vessel will remain open for a long period of time.  Stents are often used to treat diseased blood vessels in the pelvis, kidneys, abdomen, and neck.

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