Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes of death in the United States: poor diet and lack of exercise can lead to blocked or damaged blood vessels, which prevent blood from flowing freely throughout the body.
Without adequate circulation, tissues are deprived of the nutrients and oxygen they need to function efficiently. Over time, the tissues can even begin to atrophy or become severely damaged.
What is Interventional Cardiovascular Medicine?
When combined with positive lifestyle changes, interventional cardiovascular medicine offers a solution that can help restore blood flow to various areas of the body and lower blood pressure.
The tools used in intervention cardiology may offer effective solutions to many types of heart disease. Interventional cardiovascular medicine incorporates catheterization, radiology, and the use of stents and other devices to help restore proper blood flow to the body and repair damaged or diseased areas of the heart.
Blocked arteries can go unnoticed for long periods of time until they begin to cause problems. The key is correcting the issue as soon as it is discovered, restoring circulation and improving overall health.
Can Catheterization and Radiology Be Used to Treat More Than One Condition?
One of the main tools used in interventional cardiovascular medicine is catheterization. Catheterization is used by a cardiologist to re-open blood vessels that have been partially or fully blocked by plaque or cholesterol.
Some of the techniques used in interventional cardiovascular medicine include coronary angioplasty, the correction of congenital heart defect, percutaneous valve replacement, percutaneous valve repair, and coronary thrombectomy.
Catheterization and radiology can be used together to provide doctors with the opportunity to work in a limited amount of space without fully opening the chest cavity. In fact, with the combination of radiology and catheterization, doctors can guide surgical instruments to exactly where they are needed the most.
By providing doctors with the ability to reach deep into the chest without fully opening the chest cavity, this method also offer patients the opportunity to heal faster and possibly regain their livelihood in weeks rather than months.
Individuals who have a long family history of heart disease or stroke are often prime candidates for this type of medicine and the procedures it offers.
What Are the Benefits?
Reduced risk of stroke, heart attack, and death are just a few of the main benefits.
The tools and techniques offered by interventional cardiovascular medicine can be used to correct structural abnormalities of the heart and blood vessels. With these methods, congenital defects in the valves of the heart can be repaired or replaced, allowing for restored blood flow and dramatically improved circulation throughout the rest of the body.
Many interventional techniques offer long-term results that can add several years to a patient’s life.
In addition to improved circulation, the patient is often allowed to resume more strenuous activities they may have been forced to give up prior to their health issues. In many cases, patients are even able to begin exercising on a regular basis once healed and cleared by their doctors.
While structural damage has many causes, ranging from birth defects to atrophy caused by heart attacks and more, interventional cardiovascular medicine offers techniques and tools that can be used to repair structural damage and restore blood flow.
The restoration of adequate blood flow can allow a person to regain control of their life and live each day to its fullest. Repairing defects and replacing faulty valves are only the beginning of what interventional medicine can accomplish when it comes to working within the cardiovascular system.