Angioplasty is the non-surgical repair of arteries blocked with plaque. In most cases, there is very little discomfort following the procedure, so pain medication is usually not necessary.
How Long Will it Take?
- Patients are typically admitted to Lynchburg General Hospital the morning of their procedure and are released on the following day.
How Does the Procedure Work?
- An I-V (intravenous) line in the patient’s arm allows the radiologist to administer fluids and a sedative, if necessary.
- Local anesthesia is applied to numb the area where a small incision is made.
- A guide wire covered with a small tube called a catheter is inserted into the area and guided to the treatment site.
- The radiologist guides the catheter through the blood vessels by watching its progress on a video monitor that displays the x-ray images (flouroscope) of the blood vessels and catheter.
- At the treatment site, a small balloon is inflated for 10-30 seconds and then deflated. This is repeated until the vessel is opened.
- A transducer attached to the catheter monitors blood pressure and allows the radiologist to determine when the dilation is successful.
- A small wire stent may be left in place to help hold the artery open.
After the Procedure
- If the area is in the leg, we ask patients to keep their leg straight for about 12 hours and not to walk until the following day.
If your appointment is scheduled at Lynchburg General, please call (434) 947-3090 to verify.