Balloon angioplasty (also known as just angioplasty) is a procedure that allows your doctor to open blocked coronary arteries, which are the arteries that provide oxygen and nutrients to your heart muscle. Often, an expandable device, called a stent, is inserted into your blocked artery after the procedure. Stents can help the artery remain open for a longer period of time. Your doctor's choice to perform an angioplasty or insert a stent is based on the type and location of your blockage.
In addition to being effective, this procedure is safe and well tolerated in most cases.
Preparing for the Procedure
Preparing for angioplasty
involves arranging transportation and not eating or drinking for eight hours before the surgery. Also, your doctor should give you detailed instructions on how to prepare. During the procedure, dye is injected into the coronary arteries; this helps the doctor to see any blockages. If the doctor locates a blockage, he or she will prepare for balloon angioplasty or the placement of a stent. Both of these procedures allow the artery to stay open for a longer period of time after the surgery.