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A new approach to cardiac catheterization

  • Category: Blog, Heart, News
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  • Written By: King's Daughters Health
A new approach to cardiac catheterization

For decades, cardiologists have performed cardiac catheterization by threading a guidewire and catheter through the femoral artery, the major blood vessel in the leg. This has worked well: the artery is large, generally straight and relatively easy to access.

But there are some drawbacks: Most notably patients must lie flat on their backs for an extended period of time following the procedure. This can be very difficult for patients with back and breathing problems.

For the past 20 years or so, a new approach to cardiac catheterization has been taking hold, called trans radial access. Using this approach, cardiologists access the heart through the radial artery in the wrist. Because the radial artery is much smaller than the femoral artery, and closer to the surface, the risk of complications is reduced. The procedure is more comfortable for patients – especially because they are able to get up and move around shortly after the procedure.

While the trans radial approach is not for everyone, King’s Daughters is pleased to offer this procedure to patients undergoing cardiac catheterization. Four of our cardiologists currently offer trans radial cardiac catheterization: Faisal Hayat, M.D., Mohammad Al Madani, M.D., and Sri Velury, M.D.

The radial technique was first developed in the 1980s, but recent advances in miniaturizing instruments and devices have made the technique more accessible for everyone.

Traditionally, cardiac catheterization has been performed through the femoral artery, which is the very large artery in the leg near the groin.

For more information about radial access cardiac catheterization, please call the King’s Daughters Cardiology at (606) 324-4745. In Portsmouth, call (740) 353-8100.