Angioplasty and Stenting
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At the University of Maryland Heart and Vascular Center, we see hundreds of patients every year for revascularization procedures (procedures to restore blood flow).
We have one of the busiest coronary programs in the region, giving us an unparalleled level of expertise in these procedures.
We offer hope and treatment to our patients, even patients who are older and have multiple health conditions.
We are also committed to minimally invasive procedures. Instead of making a large chest incision, we use a percutaneous (through the skin) approach for angioplasty procedures. This leads to a shorter, more comfortable recovery for you. We are able to perform percutaneous procedures in almost all of our cases, and you can usually go home the next day.
Angioplasty and Stenting: What to Expect
We use angioplasty to treat atherosclerosis, a hardening of the arteries. As the arteries harden and narrow, it becomes difficult for blood to flow smoothly. If you have atherosclerosis, we will discuss angioplasty as a treatment option. In some cases, we may decide that a coronary artery bypass surgery is a better option for you. Learn more about coronary artery bypass grafting.
During an angioplasty procedure, we will:
- Make a small incision in your blood vessel.
- Thread a catheter (a small, thin tube) through your blood vessel to access the blockage.
- Inflate a balloon at the end of the catheter to widen the artery.
- Insert a stent in the artery to help prevent it from narrowing again after the angioplasty. A stent is a small coil of wire mesh.
- Ensure that the stent is in place and remove the catheter.
- Perform an angiogram to make sure that the blood is flowing smoothly through the artery.
After an Angioplasty Procedure
You will most likely be able to go home the next day. Follow your doctor’s instructions about medication and follow-up appointments. We may recommend our Center for Preventive Cardiology so you can keep your heart and arteries in good shape. Call your doctor right away if you see signs of an infection or if something does not feel right to you.