Angiography or arteriography is an outpatient medical imaging technique used to visualize the inside of blood vessels and organs of the body withparticular interest in the veins, arteries and the heart chambers. A special contrast dye is used to take pictures of the arteries with an X-ray to determine if there are blockages.
A venogram is an outpatient diagnostic that uses injection of a contrast dye and a special type of x-ray called fluoroscopy to take pictures of the veins in your body mostly your legs and arms. It is sometimes used to look for blood clots called deep vein thrombosis (DVT). An ultrasound would usually be used to look for DVT but if the results are unclear, a venogram is done.
Angioplasty is a procedure to open narrow or blocked blood vessels that supply blood to your legs. Fatty deposits can build up inside the arteries and block blood flow. A stent is a small, metal mesh tube that keeps the artery open. Angioplasty and stent placement are two ways to open blocked peripheral arteries. Angioplasty uses a medical “balloon” to widen blocked arteries. The balloon presses against the inside wall of the artery to open the space and improve blood flow. A stent is often placed across the artery wall to keep the artery from narrowing again. The stent will expand when the balloon is blown up and now, we are using drug eluting stents. The stent is left in place to help keep the artery open. The balloon and all the wires are then removed.
Atherectomy is an outpatient procedure performed to remove or “debulk” the artherosclerotic plaque from diseased arteries. Is it usually combined with low-pressure balloon angioplasty with the goal of minimizing plaque shift while avoiding stent placement. In densely calcified vessels, artherectomy has been used to better “prepare” the vessel prior to stenting in order prevent incomplete and/or eccentric stent expansion.
A renal arteriogram is a special type of X-ray picture that helps doctors see the blood vessels in your kidneys. This outpatient exam is used for patients who have high blood pressure that may be caused by a kidney problem. It also is helpful in patients who may have a kidney artery that is closed or whose arteries are inflamed.