Cardiac (coronary) Angiography
Angiography is the demonstration of the anatomy and abnormalities of the arteries and veins in all regions of the body. In patients with known or suspected heart conditions angiography is usually used to assess the coronary arteries, which take blood into the muscle of the heart. A blockage of one of these arteries is the usual cause of a heart attack. Angiography can also be useful for checking the pumping function of the heart, and for some types of heart valve problems.
How is angiography performed?
Angiography is generally performed through an artery in the groin or in the wrist, using a local anaesthetic in that area. A catheter, which is a long plastic tube, is inserted into the artery and guided to the vessel for study, under x-ray control. Contrast (dye) is injected into the artery through the catheter while an "x-ray movie" is made. Diagnostic angiography does not usually take long, and once the appropriate pictures have been obtained the catheter is removed from the body. Pressure is applied to the artery at the site of the puncture in the wrist or groin until bleeding is controlled. Following groin puncture a period of bed rest for approximately 4 hours is required, but with the wrist approach patients can mobilise almost immediately. Most patients are discharged home on the same day that the study is performed, but may be kept overnight if angioplasty (also known as PCI - see below) has been undertaken, or if the procedure finishes very late in the day.
Where is angiography performed?
The Auckland Heart Group is associated with Mercy Angiography, which is sited on the first floor of Mercy Hospital, in Epsom. Cardiologists from the Auckland Heart Group who perform angiography for private patients do so at Mercy Angiography.
Contact details for Mercy Angiography
Address: 98 Mountain Rd, Epsom, Auckland.