Treating Heart Disease in the Cath Lab
Dominican Hospital's Cardiac Catheterization Lab is used to both diagnose and treat heart disease. Even if cardiac disease is discovered, the patient can be treated that same day... in the same room.
While a thin, flexible catheter is threaded from a patient's groin to his or her heart, the catheter's path is observed by the cardiologist on a monitor during an X-ray. Once the catheter is in place, a dye is inserted into the patient’s coronary arteries. Since there are no nerves inside the arteries, the patient doesn't feel either the catheter or the dye, which the cardiologist views on the monitor as it moves through the vessels.
Where a blockage occurs, it is visible as a narrowing. Once one or more blockages have been discovered, the cardiologist evaluates its severity and decides on how to treat it.
Clot-breaking angioplasty is a routine interventional procedure today, and stainless steel stents are often implanted to keep the arteries open and improve blood flow through the area.
Often, skilled Dominican cardiologists can spare the cardiac patient further invasive treatment through an intervention in the Cath Lab.
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