- Angioplasty: A technique used to widen the narrowing in the artery without surgery.
- Atherectomy: A procedure to remove plaque from arteries.
- Intracoronary infusion of thrombolytics: Infusions of “clot-busting” medications to remove blood clots.
- Intercoronary stenting: A stent inserted into the blood vessel on a balloon catheter to improve blood flow. The balloon is inflated, which causes the stent to expand and hold the blood vessel open. The stent is permanent.
- Rotoblation: Similar to other atherectomy procedures, rotoblation is another way to remove plaque and obstruction from the arteries.
- Electrophysiology: Diagnostic studies for heart rhythm problems and implantation of devices (pacemakers) for the treatment of rhythm problems.
- Tilt table test: Used to determine how the body responds to changes in position, as symptoms, heart rate and blood pressure are continuously monitored. The test is often used on patients with recurring fainting spells.
The heart beats on average 60 to 100 times a minute. The body’s electrical system sends impulses to the heart muscle, telling it when to pump blood. A change in the pace or pattern of a heartbeat is called an arrhythmia. Although frightening, these changes are usually not serious, unless the patient also has heart disease.
For more information about diagnosis and treatment for arrhythmias, visit the American Heart Association website.
Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI)
Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) refers to medical procedures that reduce the level of constriction, or narrowing, in a coronary artery due to plaque formation.
Coronary balloon angioplasty and atherectomy are two of the most commonly performed coronary catheterization procedures. See the American Heart Association’s website for more detailed information.
During the procedures described above, a coronary stent is sometimes used to help hold an artery open. After the narrowing is reduced or removed, a tiny, slotted, stainless steel tube (the stent) can be implanted at the site by the cardiologist. Serving as a scaffold for the artery, the stent is a permanent implant that helps keep the artery open, improves blood flow, and may relieve the symptoms of coronary artery disease.
Our vascular surgeons were instrumental in developing aortic aneurysm stent graft technology, making O’Connor one of the first hospitals in the country to offer this advanced and innovative procedure.
Jeff Scoggins, RN, Cath Lab Manager: (408) 947-2874.