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Cardiovascular Stent Placement

Overview

This procedure puts a mesh stent into a narrowed or blocked artery in your heart. The stent widens the artery and holds it open. This improves blood circulation to your heart's tissue.

Preparation

To begin, you're given medicine to make you feel relaxed. The site where the catheter will be put in is numbed. This is commonly a blood vessel in your groin, arm or wrist.

Locating the Blockage

A small opening is made, and a protective sheath is inserted. A guide wire is put through this sheath. It's pushed through a blood vessel to your heart. Then, a catheter is pushed over the guide wire and up into the heart. Contrast dye is injected into your heart's blood vessels. The dye can be seen clearly with a video x-ray device we call a "fluoroscope." Any blockages show up on the fluoroscope.

Deploying the Stent

To treat a blockage, a balloon-tipped catheter is pushed into the blocked artery. It carries a collapsed stent. When the catheter is in position, the balloon is inflated. This expands the stent. It presses firmly against the walls of the artery. The stent widens the artery, holding it open to restore healthy blood flow.

End of Procedure

After the procedure, you are watched in a recovery room. Your doctor will tell you when you can go home. Follow your instructions for a safe recovery.