A Leader in Cardiovascular Procedures and Services.

Heart Catheterization at McLaren Port Huron

What is heart catherization? 

Percutaneous Coronary Intervention 

Heart catheterization (also called cardiac catherization, cardiac cath, or coronary angiogram) is an invasive imaging procedure that tests for heart disease by allowing your doctor to "see" how well your heart is functioning. During the test, a long, narrow tube, called a catheter, is inserted into a blood vessel in your leg or arm and guided to your heart with the aid of a special X-ray machine. Contrast dye is injected through the catheter so that X-ray movies of your valves, coronary arteries, and heart chambers can be created.

Angiogram of coronary artery vessels

Coronary arteries

patient cardiac catheterization video 

Coronary angiography is an X-ray examination of the blood vessels or chambers of the heart, used to diagnose blockages and other problems in ateries and veins. Heart specialists at McLaren Port Huron insert a very small tube (catheter) into a blood vessel in your upper thigh (groin area) or arm. The tip of the tube is positioned either in the heart or at the beginning of the arteries supplying the heart, and a special fluid (called a contrast medium or dye) is injected. This fluid is visible by X-ray, and the pictures that are obtained are called angiograms.

Your doctor and you will discuss the need for this test, along with the benefits and risk.

Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

Percutaneous coronary interventions are minimally invasive therapeutic procedures for rebuilding and unblocking occluded (clogged) blood vessels.  It is typically performed during the heart catherization.  The physicican can unblock the vessel the following ways:

  • Balloon AngioplastyBalloon Angioplasty — The physician locates the blocked artery and inflates a tiny balloon inside the blood vessel, opening the vessel to allow normal blood flow.

      Actual size of balloon Cardiac Catheter Actual Size 

Stent Insertion — The physician can insert a stent into an occluded blood vessel, causing it to return to its normal size.

Artery_plaque_catheter_balloon_stentArtery after heart catherization and stent insertion
Peripheral Vascular Intervention

Peripheral Vascular Intervention use minimally invasive, catheter-based approaches to treat diseases of the peripheral vascular system (any of the body's blood vessels outside the heart and brain). These peripheral vascular interventions include treatments for carotid artery disease, blockages of the blood vessels in the legs, non-healing ulcers and blockages to the arteries to the kidneys.