Most interventional procedures will require some preparation though instructions will vary depending on the type of procedure to be performed. When your healthcare provider schedules your appointment, you will be given specific instructions to follow. In most cases, you will need to be accompanied and arrange for transportation following the procedure. In some cases, an overnight stay in the hospital may be required.
Following your exam, the interventional radiologist will analyze and interpret the images from your exam and prepare a full report. This report will be sent directly to your physician who will share the results with you. To request a copy of the report, you may contact your physician's office.
When your physician orders an interventional radiology procedure for you, the physician's office will contact the Interventional Radiology Department and make the arrangements.
A Sample of Common Interventional Procedures
An X-ray of the arteries or veins to diagnose blockages and other blood vessel problems; uses a catheter to enter the blood vessel and a contrast agent (X-ray dye) to make the artery or vein visible on the X-ray.
Opens blocked or narrowed blood vessels by inserting a very small balloon into the vessel and inflating it. Used by Interventional Radiologist to unblock clogged arteries in the legs or arms (called peripheral vascular disease or PVD), kidneys (a cause of hypertension), or elsewhere in the body.
Biliary Drainage and Stenting
Uses a stent (small mesh tube) to open up blocked ducts and allow bile to drain from the liver.
Central Venous Access
Insertion of a tube beneath the skin and into the blood vessels so that patients can receive medication or nutrients directly into the blood stream to allow blood withdrawal.
Delivery of cancer-fighting agents directly to the site of a cancer tumor, currently being used mostly to treat cancers of the endocrine system and liver cancers.
Delivery of clotting agents (coils, plastic particles, gel foam, etc.) directly to an area that is bleeding such as a bleeding intestine or to block blood flow to a problem area, such as an aneurysm or a fibroid tumor in the uterus.
Feeding tube inserted into the stomach for patients who are unable to take sufficient food by mouth.
Use of central venous access in order to place a catheter that can be used for dialysis.
Using ultrasound guidance to drain excess fluid from the abdomen for diagnostic tests and/or symptomatic relief
Radiofrequency (RF) Ablation
Use of radiofrequency (RF) energy to kill cancerous tumors.
A small flexible tube made of plastic or wire mesh, used to treat a variety of medical conditions (e.g., to hold open clogged blood vessels or other pathways that have been narrowed or blocked by tumors or obstructions).
Reinforces a ballooning section of an artery (an aneurysm) with a fabric-wrapped stent; a small, flexible mesh tube used to "patch" the blood vessel. Also known as an endograft.
Using ultrasound guidance to drain excess fluid from around the lung for diagnostic tests and/or symptomatic relief
Dissolves blood clots by injecting clot-busting drugs at the site of the clot.
TIPS (Transjugular Intrahepatic Portosystemic Shunt)
A life-saving procedure to prevent or stop hemorrhage in patients with severe liver dysfunction.
Uterine Artery Embolization
An embolization procedure of uterine arteries to stop life-threatening postpartum bleeding, potentially preventing hysterectomy. The same procedure is used to treat fibroid tumors and is then called UFE (Uterine Fibroid Embolization).
A treatment for "varicose veins" in the scrotum, which can cause infertility and pain.
Vena Cava Filter
A tiny cage-like device that is inserted in a blood vessel to trap clots and prevent them from reaching the heart or lungs.
Vertrebroplasty and Kyphoplasty
Injection of bone cement into a fractured vertebral body. This stabilizes the fracture and alleviates pain. These fractures are commonly caused by osteoporosis.
Do you suffer from varicose veins?
Varicose veins are part of an underlying process called chronic venous insufficiency. This occurs when the valves in your veins, which normally prevent blood from refluxing in the leg, become damaged. As a result, blood stagnates instead of flowing back to the heart. This can lead to symptoms like leg heaviness and pain, varicose veins, brawny skin changes and, in severe cases, ulcers on the legs.
Treatment in Interventional Radiology
The CHA Interventional Radiology team helps patients with chronic venous insufficiency. Our trained Radiologists and Vascular Surgeons shut down damaged veins using laser energy – a procedure called Endovenous Laser Treatment (EVLT). This lets the body form new venous channels in which blood can flow back to the heart in a normal way.
Any patient with leg heaviness or pain, especially after walking or standing for a long time, varicose veins, skin changes, and/or ulcerations can be evaluated in our IR clinic.
We start with an ultrasound to see if your symptoms are cause by damaged veins. If we see reflux on imaging, we typically start treatment with compression stockings and over-the-counter pain medications. If the symptoms persist after this conservative therapy, then we proceed with the EVLT procedure.