Interventional cardiology is a specialized area of cardiovascular care, often associated with heart attack treatment, that uses a tiny hollow tube, or catheter, inserted into a blood vessel to diagnose and treat cardiovascular diseases or conditions. At Pardee, our interventional cardiologists work in our cardiac catheterization lab and are skilled at performing scheduled and emergency cardiac cath procedures.
What Is Cardiac Catheterization?
Cardiac catheterization is not surgery. It is a minimally invasive procedure in which a catheter is used to deliver tools or treatments through the blood vessels to the heart or other parts of the circulatory system. It helps doctors diagnose and treat heart disease, vascular disease, heart defects and heart attacks.
What Happens During a Cardiac Cath Procedure?
You will be awake or mildly sedated. Our interventional cardiologists numb a small area of the groin or wrist and a catheter will be threaded into a blood vessel through a small puncture in one of those areas.
Diagnostic Cardiac Catheterization
During diagnostic cardiac catheterization procedures, our interventional cardiologists use the catheter to look inside your blood vessels and evaluate blockages from diseases, such as atherosclerosis, and defects of your heart and vascular structures. These diagnostic procedures include:
- Intravascular ultrasound, performed in an artery to determine heart function.
Cardiac Catheterization to Treat Cardiovascular Diseases and Conditions
A cardiac cath may also be used to treat various cardiovascular diseases and conditions. Here are common procedures performed in our Catheterization Lab:
Additionally, a catheter can be used to treat structural defects of the heart, which impact your heart’s ability to efficiently pump blood.
Heart Attack Care, Close to Home
During a heart attack, a cardiac catheterization becomes a lifesaving procedure, as the doctor races to open the blood vessel before permanent damage to the heart occurs. With our designated Chest Pain Center accreditation by the American College of Cardiology, we must maintain extensive treatment protocols in our Emergency Center to quickly treat patients with heart attack symptoms. With our interventional cardiologist, Dr. Eduardo Balcells, and Emergency Center staff, we’re ready to activate our Catheterization Lab team to treat you or to transfer you to a nearby hospital in severe cases.