Angioplasty definition : What is angioplasty?
Angioplasty meaning : Angioplasty is a medical procedure used to widen narrowed or blocked arteries or blood vessels, typically in the heart, brain, or legs. It involves the insertion of a small, flexible tube called a catheter into the affected artery or blood vessel. The catheter is then guided to the site of the blockage, and a tiny balloon at the end of the catheter is inflated to compress the plaque or blockage against the wall of the artery or blood vessel, thereby widening the passage for blood flow. In some cases, a stent may also be inserted to help keep the artery or blood vessel open. Angioplasty is commonly used to treat coronary artery disease, peripheral artery disease, and carotid artery disease.
What are the objectives of angioplasty ?
The primary objectives of angioplasty are to :
- Improve blood flow : Angioplasty is used to open up narrowed or blocked arteries, which helps to improve blood flow to vital organs and tissues. This can help to relieve symptoms such as chest pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath ;
- Prevent heart attacks and strokes : Angioplasty can help to prevent heart attacks and strokes by opening up blocked or narrowed arteries in the heart or brain, respectively. By restoring blood flow, angioplasty can help to prevent the formation of blood clots that can lead to these serious events ;
- Reduce the need for surgery : Angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that can often be performed without the need for open-heart surgery or other major procedures. This can help to reduce the risks and recovery time associated with more invasive treatments ;
- Improve quality of life : By improving blood flow and reducing symptoms, angioplasty can help to improve a person’s overall quality of life. This can include the ability to perform daily activities without pain or discomfort, improved energy levels, and a reduced risk of serious complications such as heart attacks or strokes ;
How much angioplasty cost?
The angioplasty cost can vary depending on various factors, including the country or region where the procedure is performed, the hospital or medical facility where it is done, the extent of the blockage or narrowing in the artery, the type of angioplasty procedure used, and the length of the hospital stay.
In Tunisia, the cost of angioplasty can range from around $5,000 to $10,000 or more, depending on the factors mentioned above. However, this is just an estimate and the actual cost can vary significantly based on individual circumstances.
It’s important to note that insurance coverage can also play a significant role in the cost of angioplasty, with many insurance plans covering some or all of the cost of the procedure. It’s always a good idea to check with your insurance provider to determine your coverage and out-of-pocket costs.
Your angioplasty after a coronary angiography
Angioplasty is a common treatment for coronary artery disease, and it is often performed after a coronary angiography. During a coronary angiography, a catheter is inserted into an artery in the groin or arm and guided to the heart. A special dye is then injected through the catheter to allow doctors to visualize any blockages or narrowing in the coronary arteries.
If significant blockages or narrowing are identified during the angiography, angioplasty may be recommended.
Balloon angioplasty: The procedure involves inserting a small balloon-tipped catheter into the affected artery, and inflating the balloon to compress the plaque or blockage against the wall of the artery. In some cases, a stent may also be inserted to help keep the artery open.
After angioplasty, patients are typically monitored in a hospital setting for a few hours or overnight. The insertion site is monitored for bleeding or other complications, and patients are typically instructed to avoid strenuous activity for a few days following the procedure. Medications such as blood thinners may also be prescribed to prevent blood clots from forming in the newly opened artery.
Overall, angioplasty can be a highly effective treatment for coronary artery disease, and it is often performed following a coronary angiography to help improve blood flow to the heart and reduce the risk of heart attack or other serious complications.
Coronary angioplasty complications
Like any medical procedure, coronary angioplasty can have potential complications, although they are relatively rare.
Some possible complications of coronary angioplasty include :
- Bleeding : The insertion site for the catheter used during the procedure may bleed or bruise. This is usually minor and resolves on its own, but in rare cases, it can require additional medical treatment ;
- Infection : There is a risk of infection at the site where the catheter was inserted, although this is also rare ;
- Allergic reaction : Some people may have an allergic reaction to the contrast dye used during the procedure, which can cause symptoms such as hives or difficulty breathing ;
- Blood clots : In rare cases, the procedure can dislodge plaque or blood clots that can then travel to other parts of the body, leading to a heart attack or stroke ;
- Restenosis : In some cases, the artery may narrow again after angioplasty, requiring additional treatment ;
- Coronary artery dissection : Rarely, the procedure can cause a tear in the inner layer of the coronary artery, which can be a serious complication that may require emergency treatment ;
- Kidney damage : The contrast dye used during the procedure can sometimes cause kidney damage, especially in people with pre-existing kidney problems ;
It’s important to note that these complications are rare, and many people undergo angioplasty with minimal side effects or complications. However, it’s important to discuss the potential risks and benefits of the procedure with your doctor before undergoing any medical treatment.
Plan your medical stay for an angioplasty
If you are planning to travel abroad for an angioplasty, do not hesitate to contact us so that we can assist in organizing your trip.