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a short and simplified information about coronary angiogram & coronary angioplasty

 A coronary angiogram, also known as cardiac catheterization, is a medical procedure used to visualize the blood vessels that supply the heart with oxygen and nutrients. During this procedure, a thin tube called a catheter is inserted into an artery in the groin or wrist and guided through the blood vessels to the heart.

Once the catheter is in place, a special dye called contrast material is injected through the catheter and into the coronary arteries. The dye allows the arteries to be visualized on X-ray images, which are captured in real-time.

The images obtained during the procedure can reveal any narrowing, blockages, or abnormalities in the coronary arteries. This information can be used to diagnose conditions such as coronary artery disease, which can cause chest pain, shortness of breath, and other symptoms.

In some cases, a coronary angiogram can also be used to treat a blocked artery & we call it 'coronary angioplasty'. During the procedure, a tiny balloon can be inflated at the site of the blockage to open up the artery and restore blood flow. A small metal mesh tube called a stent may also be inserted to help keep the artery open.

Although a coronary angiogram is generally considered a safe and routine procedure, it does carry some risks, such as bleeding or damage to the blood vessels. Your healthcare provider will discuss the risks and benefits of the procedure with you beforehand and help you decide if it is the best course of action for your specific situation.

Nurses involvement:

Nurses play main role for pre assessment, intra procedure and post procedure care. The role in cardiac cath lab is almost similar to Operating Room Nurses. 

i shared few important role that nurses carry out for the patients which is going for angiogram/angioplasty procedure. 

  • Nurses should ensure the procedure is listed and consented before send patient for procedure.
  • make sure patient is fasting prior to the procedure.
  • ensure safety check list is complete and patient is aware with the needs and importance of procedure. 
    • usually doctor prescribed dual anti-platelets tablet for the patients, need to take before procedure.
    • make sure patient shared related information with medical condition such as allergic, any procedure or heart surgery in past, it is very important for the doctors know before carry out procedure.
  • For post procedure, patient will be monitored in recovery bay before send patient to ward.
  • Nurses at recovery will make sure patient is alert, no pain and hemodynamically stable, no bleeding at puncture site, documentation is complete before transfer patient to ward. 

if you need complete information, refer to the images below:
before procedure:

during procedure:

after procedure:

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