Our procedures are intended to treat a broad spectrum of conditions and disorders all with the use of X-ray guidance and minimally invasive non-surgical techniques. Almost all of our procedures are done through a small hole in the groin or wrist that allows us to access the interior of blood vessels. With the use of catheters and guide wires, we are able to precisely locate specific blood vessels for local treatment. Using these techniques we can close off damaged or hemorrhaging blood vessels, open up closed or narrowed vessels, and deliver medications directly to specific regions in the body.
We also have an expertise in placing needles with the use of X-ray equipment. Most of our procedures are very quick with very little actual procedure time and very quick recoveries.
Fluoroscopy is an imaging technique that allows our doctors to view live X-ray of your body during each procedure. This non-surgical, minimally invasive procedure ensures that they can place the needle or catheter in precisely the right location.
Minimally Invasive Procedures
The majority of our procedures are performed on an outpatient basis at our freestanding facility. You can park fifty feet from our door and walk into our reception area. No hospital parking to navigate, no impersonal hospital personnel. Just our doctors and our staff of caring people who are there to help you.
All of our procedures are minimally invasive, which means that you won’t have large scars or a long recovery time. They are virtually painless, and you’ll be able to walk out of the office and return to work the next day. We can perform a great variety of procedures by accessing your body from inside your blood vessels, protecting you from the potential complications posed by surgical techniques.
Most importantly, the procedures that we perform have an excellent success rate.
Our doctors perform two main types of procedures: catheter-based and needle-based. Catheter-based procedures use a long thin flexible tube to traverse your blood vessels to reach the location of the procedure. Only a tiny incision is necessary at the entry site; you’ll walk out with just a Band-aid. Needle-based procedures use a hollow needle to go directly to the procedure site. Sometimes a device will be inserted through the needle to perform the procedure.
Benefits of Minimally Invasive Procedures
There are many benefits to minimally invasive techniques over traditional surgical techniques.
- Very Effective: treat the specific area causing the issue
- No General Anesthesia: Conscious sedation is used instead, so you will be awake but calm and comfortable.
- Quick Recovery Time: most people walk out of the office and return to work the next day
- Little or No Blood Loss: no need for blood transfusion
- Tiny Incision: no need for stitches and very little chance of infection
- Less Painful: no incisions to heal
- Lower Cost: no hospital stay required
Risks of Minimally Invasive Procedures
There are very few risks to minimally invasive procedures when compared to traditional surgery.
- Infection: any procedure in which the skin is broken carries a risk of infection, but the hole is so tiny that it is very uncommon.
- Blood Vessel Damage: any procedure involving a catheter in a blood vessel carries the slight risk of damage to the blood vessel.
- Bruising or bleeding at the site of entry
How They Work
A long thin flexible tube, called a catheter, is inserted through a tiny hole in your skin into a blood vessel in your body. The catheter is then guided through your circulatory system using X-ray techology. The interventional radiologist watches the progress of the catheter in your blood vessel and guides it carefully to its destination. Different catheters have different tips to allow the interventional radiologist to choose the one that will most easily reach the destination from the entry point.
Catheters are hollow inside, allowing the interventional radiologist to feed the necessary tools through it to perform the procedure. For example, if endovenous ablation is being done, the radiologist will insert a tiny laser through the catheter to perform the ablation at the end of the catheter. For procedures like angioplasty and stent placement, the catheter itself may be the tool, with a balloon on the end that can be inflated to open up a constricted blood vessel.
You will be placed on an examination table in a radiology suite, which contains equipment for imaging. You will be connected to monitors to watch your blood pressure and heart rate during the procedure. An IV will be inserted by a CRNA (certified register nurse anestatist) so that the sedative medication can be administered.
The small area where the catheter will enter your body, generally in your groin, will be shaved and sterilized, then covered with a surgical drape.
A local anesthetic will be applied before a small nick is made in your skin. This incision is just about the size of a pencil point, and will not require stitches. This is where the catheter will be inserted into your blood vessel. The local anesthetic is applied with a needle, so you will feel a small pinprick.
A hollow needle and sheath are then placed into the nick so that the catheter can move smoothly into your blood vessel. You may feel a slight pressure, but no serious discomfort.
The catheter is guided through your blood vessel to the precise location where treatment is needed. The guidance is done by watching the catheter with live X-ray, called fluoroscopy.
Once the catheter has reached the procedure site, the procedure is done by using tiny devices to perform the treatment.
After the treatment has been done, the catheter and needle are removed. Your exam table will be wheeled into the recovery area until you feel comfortable and ready to leave.
You will be placed on an examination table in a radiology suite, which contains equipment for imaging. You will be connected to monitors to watch your blood pressure and heart rate during the procedure. An IV will be inserted by a CRNA (certified register nurse anesthetist) so that the sedative medication can be administered.
The small area where the needle will enter your body will be shaved and sterilized, then covered with a surgical drape.
A local anesthetic will be applied before the needle enters your skin. The local anesthetic is applied with a needle, so you will feel a small pinprick.
Once the area is numb, the needle is guided through your skin to the precise location where treatment is needed. The guidance is done by watching the needle with live X-ray, called fluoroscopy. You may feel a slight pressure, but no serious discomfort.
After the treatment has been done, the needle is removed. Your exam table will be wheeled into the recovery area until you feel comfortable and ready to leave.