Advanced Cardiac Catheterization Lab
Now Open at North Shore Medical Center
In an effort to help provide faster and more efficient cardiac care to area residents, North Shore Medical Center now provides diagnostic cardiac catheterization procedures. The benefits of catheter-based interventions may include shorter hospital stays, reduced recovery time without the pain of a large incision, and less visible surgical scarring.
A cardiac catheterization procedure can show narrowing in the arteries, outside heart size, inside chamber size, pumping ability of the heart, ability of the valves to open and close and pressure measurement within the heart.
What is Cardiac Catheterization?
Cardiac Catheterization (Cath) is a specialized study of the heart during which a catheter, or thin hollow flexible tube, is inserted into the artery of the groin or arm. Under x-ray visualization, the tip of the catheter is guided to the heart. Pressures are measured and an x-ray Angiogram (Angio) movie of the heart and blood vessels are obtained while injecting an iodinated colorless "dye" or contrast material through the catheter. Coronary angios are obtained by injecting the contrast material into the opening or mouth of a coronary artery. The iodinated solution blocks the passage of x-rays. X-ray movie pictures taken during the injection of the contrast material allow the coronary arteries to be visualized. In other words, coronary arteries are not visible on x-ray film. However, they can be made temporarily visible by filling the coronary artery with a contrast solution that blocks x-ray.
The coronary arteries are vital because they supply oxygen and nutrients to the heart muscle. Without blood flow, the muscle would sustain permanent damage in the form of a heart attack or myocardial (pronounced my-ow-card-yull) infarction (pronounced in-fark-shun).
Cardiac Catheterization (Cath) is also known as Heart Cath, Angiogram (Angio) (pronounced an-gee-o-gram) or Arteriogram (pronounced ar-tee-rio-gram). The latter two terms describe the use of contrast material to take x-ray pictures of the heart.
Cardiologists and staff have access to innovative technology that can extend treatment capabilities and reduce risks. Our fully digital computerized advanced X-ray system enables physicians to capture and view detailed 3D images of a patient’s cardiac vasculature, thereby facilitating faster and more accurate diagnosis and treatment of cardiac disease. It also means less radiation exposure for the patient.
For a free physician referral, please call 1-800-984-3434.