Based on your past medical history, physical exam and current symptoms, your doctor is recommending a diagnostic procedure called Cardiac Catheterization. Through cardiac catheterization, your doctor is able to study the condition of your heart, including the muscle, valves and arteries.
If you have been experiencing symptoms such as chest pain, lightheadedness, breathing problems or fainting spells, because of a heart condition - this procedure allows for problems, such as blocked or narrowed arteries, to be identified.
If a blocked artery is found, your doctor may perform a balloon angioplasty during the procedure. Angioplasty can be used to open blocked coronary arteries and improve blood and oxygen flow to your heart without surgery. Another treatment your doctor may recommend is atherectomy. If your doctor finds very hardened blockages in your coronary arteries, atherectomy may be used to remove the blockages with a special pulverizing device. Often, an expandable device, called a stent, is inserted into your blocked artery after angioplasty or atherectomy. Stents can help the artery remain open for a longer period of time.
Your doctor's choice to perform any of these procedures, is based on the type and location of your blockage.