Interventional Radiology at Union Hospital, Dover Ohio

Atherectomy

What is an Atherectomy?

Blocked artery (left) before atherectomy and after artery is re-opened (right).
Blocked artery (left) before atherectomy and after artery is re-opened (right).

Atherectomy is a process to remove plaque in a blood vessel that is causing a narrowing or blockage of the vessel and restore blood flow.

What will happen?

The procedure starts with an Angiogram. [If you are not familiar with angiograms, learn more now.] During this process a sheath will be placed into the upper leg. A guide wire will be place through this sheath and through the narrowed blood vessel. A mechanical device on a catheter is placed over this guide wire and into the narrowed blood vessel where it removes the plaque causing the blockage so that blood flow is restored.

Will it hurt?

Typical atherectomy device used to open a blocked artery.
Typical atherectomy device used to open a blocked artery.

Generally this procedure is not painful. Except for our talking with the patient, most people are unaware that the Atherectomy is taking place.

When can I get back to my normal activity?

This procedure may require the patient to stay overnight. Depending on the location of the blood vessel, normally you can go home the next day and get back to your regular activity that evening. The doctor or nurse will let you know for sure

When do I get my results?

The doctor will be able to tell you and your family the results as soon as the procedure is finished.

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