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How long does cardiac catheterization take?


Most people who want to undergo a cardiac catheterization procedure wonder how long the cardiac catheterization process takes.


In fact, it is not possible to determine an accurate answer to this question, as the procedure for catheterization depends on many factors that affect its duration. The following are the most important answers that doctors answered to this question, which were received on the website :

How long does the cardiac catheterization process take?

How long does the cardiac catheterization process take?

1. Dr. Benjamin Yang answers:

It only takes 30 minutes to take pictures during cardiac catheterization. We may need another preparation time to make sure everything is sterile and to ensure that no infection and infection will occur.

But if doctors need to fix something, the treatment period can extend to an hour and a half or two, sometimes even longer. It depends on the complexity of the condition and the severity of the disease.

Having cardiac catheterization taken longer does not necessarily mean that things are going wrong. It just means some arteries are difficult to repair.

2. Piedmont Heart Institute answers:

From the patient’s point of view, the cardiac catheterization procedure usually begins with the patient being registered at the cardiac catheterization laboratory registration desk. Then the patient is returned to the admission unit, where he is prepared for the operation. This can include preparation and shaving of the groin or arm area, depending on the location of the cardiac catheter. After this, the patient is returned to the cath lab and generally given mild sedation, and the procedure itself usually takes no more than 15-30 minutes. The patient is then returned to the recovery unit, where the catheter is removed. Then the patient is observed for several hours, after which he can go home. Sometimes, the procedure is combined with additional therapeutic procedures such as coronary intervention and this will generally prolong the procedure by one hour.

3. East Side Medical Center answers:

The routine cardiac catheterization procedure usually takes less than 30 minutes. However, in order to initiate the procedure, the patient must be given informed information, taken to the cath lab and prepared using sterile materials and other equipment; This may take up to 30 minutes by itself. After the catheter is complete, it may take another 30 minutes to finish placing the patient on a stretcher, with the catheter removed so that he can heal before returning to his room. Complex procedures may take up to 4-6 hours in patients who have birth defects or are undergoing therapeutic interventions such as coronary stents, valve implantation or repair.


How is cardiac catheterization performed?

Before performing cardiac catheterization, the doctor will ask you if you agree to undergo this test and will ask you to sign your consent, and then he will schedule the procedure for you, and the doctor will explain to you how to prepare yourself. If your condition is an emergency, your doctor may decide to get you tested immediately, because in these cases the most important thing is to save your life.

You might be hospitalized the night before the catheter procedure. But if you go straight in the morning, don’t forget to not eat and drink eight hours earlier. Go to the hospital calmly and with a close person. You should come early so that you do not have to hurry and tire before the test. Before entering the room where the test will be conducted, they will ask you to change your clothes and give you a hospital gown. Once inside, you will see many screens and mobiles where you will lie on your back.

Before starting the procedure, a manometer will be placed on your arm, and several electrodes will be attached to the chest to control the heart rate, and then you will be injected intravenously in the other arm in case you need to inject a drug.

In most cases, the catheter will be inserted through the iliac artery in the groin, although sometimes the doctor will decide to insert the catheter into the radial artery of the arm, or the subclavian artery of the shoulder. The area to be injected will be shaved and cleaned with disinfectants to maintain the correct sterile measures. Don’t shave the area before coming into your home, as this can cause infections.

In the shaved area, a little local anesthetic will be injected before the main artery is injected. Once injected, a thin hollow tube will be inserted through the needle, after which the needle will be removed leaving the tube inside the artery, and through this tube a catheter, which is similar to a flexible wire, is inserted. Each catheter has a different curvature depending on which area of ​​heart you want to reach. It is performed X – ray imaging with low radiation at different times to locate the catheter.

When the catheter is in the area of ​​the heart to be studied, the radioactive contrast material will be implanted. At that time, it is normal to feel heat and even hot flashes, it feels normal. Once the anatomy of the area is studied, the appropriate treatment will be decided. For example, in the case of angina pectoris (which is one of the most common reasons for catheterization), plaques will appear in the arteries that partially obstruct blood flow, and the artery can be widened in various ways.

Actions done in the heart through the catheter will never go unnoticed. You will not notice anything at any time, except for a choking sensation when the radioactive contrast material is injected. Upon completion, the catheter is removed, and the injection site will be pressed where the catheter was inserted for several minutes (between 10 and 20 minutes) to facilitate clotting in the wound. After that, the area will be cleaned and covered with a bandage.

Finally, you will be taken to another room to rest, and you will be kept under observation for a while. Then you will go to the sick room to the hospital, or you can go home if you are in good condition.

Cardiac catheter complications

Most of the complications that may affect a person after cardiac catheterization are rare. Some of what can happen at times includes the following:

  • Discomfort or nausea and vomiting.
  • Fainting and loss of consciousness.
  • Arrhythmia.
  • Bleeding into the arteries where the catheter was passed.
  • Sudden changes in blood pressure.
  • An allergic reaction to the radioactive contrast material.
  • Infarction of the heart or brain.
  • Internal bleeding or pericarditis .
  • Blood clots



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