Angioplasty : Balloon & Percutaneous Transluminal Angioplasty

Angioplasty is a surgical technique for reopening narrowed or blocked arteries in the heart (coronary arteries) without doing major surgery Today we are going to discuss angioplasty and how it will be successful for your health. There are some methods which we’ll discuss here.


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What is Angioplasty?


It is a method which is used to restore blood flow through your arteries. Some conditions cause the blood flow to slow, making it difficult for your body to receive the necessary oxygen and nutrients. It opens up the blocked artery so blood can flow easily and smoothly.


What are the Types of Angioplasty?


There are five types of angioplasty:


1. Balloon Angioplasty:


In this technique, a specially designed catheter with a small balloon is carefully guided through the artery to the blockage, then inflated to widen the opening and increase the blood flow to the heart. The stent is frequently placed during the procedure, to keep the artery open after the balloon is deflated and removed.


2. Carotid Artery Angioplasty:


In carotid angioplasty, stenting is a minimally invasive procedure in which a very small hollow tube, or catheter, is advanced from a blood vessel in the groin to the carotid arteries. When the catheter is in place, a balloon may be inflated to open the artery and a stent is placed.


3. Cerebral Angioplasty:


In this technique, it is similar to a rangy used cardiology procedure and it is used to open partially blocked vertebral and carotid arteries in the neck, as well as blood vessels within the brain.


4. Coronary Artery Stent:


In this stent, a small coil is expanded inside the blocked artery to open the blocked area and is left in place to keep the artery open.


5. Laser Angioplasty:


In this technique, a laser is used to vaporize the blockage in the artery.


6. PTA of the Femoral Artery


PTA is a newer, minimally invasive procedure which is used to open the blocked or narrowed femoral artery and to restore arterial blood flow to the lower leg without open vascular surgery.


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How PTCA Works?

A long hollow tube is inserted into the coronary artery to be treated. This catheter has a small balloon and the balloon is inflated once the catheter has been placed into the narrowed area of the coronary artery.


The balloon presses the fatty tissue in the artery and makes a larger opening inside the artery for improved blood flow.



Fluoroscopy is a special x-ray which assists the physician in the location of blockages in the coronary arteries as the contrast dye moves through the arteries.

Intravascular ultrasound (IVUS)


This technique uses a computer and a transducer which sends out ultrasonic sound waves to create images of the blood vessels.

Process Before Angioplasty:


You have to ask your doctor if you are allergic to iodine or seafood since angioplasty involves injecting you with an iodine-based dye. You have to go for some preliminary blood tests. Your doctor may suggest you to not smoke for a period of time before or after the treatment.


You cannot eat after midnight, the night before your treatment. Consult your doctor if you can drink clear liquids after midnight. You can normally continue to take your medications, but you should confirm this with your doctor.


After Angioplasty:


Most of the people are admitted to the hospital and are observed overnight after treatment. They are normally sent home early the next day. When they are back home, they can start doing routine activities after a few days but they should avoid any type of lifting or other strenuous physical activity for about 5 to 10 days or as long as their doctor suggests. Their doctor will tell you when they will be able to return to work and resume driving and physical activity.


If they have a stent, they will have to take an extra blood thinner medication. This treatment may continue for one year. They have to put off dental work for several months due to the risk of endocarditis (an infection of the heart).



In the above article, we have discussed angioplasty its types, before and after this technique. The only way to cure yourself is to consult a good cardiologist as soon as possible.


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