Angioplasty & Stent Placement

What are Angioplasty & Stent Placement?

Angioplasty is a procedure to open a narrow or closed blood vessel without having to undergo major surgery.  A stent is a hollow, thin-walled wire mesh tube used to keep the vessel open after widening it.

What will the procedure be like?

After receiving a sedative, a catheter with a tiny balloon at its tip will be inserted into the vessel.  Once the catheter is at the site of the blockage, the balloon will be inflated and then deflated and removed.

If a stent is used, it will be placed onto the balloon and pressed against the artery wall when the balloon is inflated.  The balloon is then deflated and the stent is left in place. You may feel pain briefly at the site of the angioplasty when the balloon is inflated.

What can I expect after the procedure?

After the procedure, you will have to remain flat on your back and avoid moving your legs or groin for about 6 hours.

When home, you should:

  • Avoid excessive activity and strenuous exercise
  • Avoid driving for 24 hours
  • Drink plenty of fluids

Things to look out for:

  • Bleeding where the catheter was inserted
  • Any change in color or a warm feeling where the catheter was inserted
  • Pain in the area where the balloon was inflated

If any of the above symptoms occur, contact your physician immediately.

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