At Memorial’s Cath Lab, we perform diagnostics, procedures, and treatments that can help you manage issues with your heart. Below are some of the diagnostic tests and procedures offered at Memorial’s Cath Lab.
Diagnostic Cardiac Catheterization
During your catheterization, a special dye is injected to trace the movement of blood through the arteries in order to pinpoint the size and location of plaque build-up.
Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty (PCTA)
One of the most effective procedures that treat blockage in a coronary artery is a PCTA. During this procedure, a small balloon is inserted into the point of a blockage and inflated in order to improve the blood flow. Learn more about PCTA here.
Coronary Stent Placement
During this procedure, a small, expandable wire tube is inserted into the coronary artery to hold it open.
Another device that Memorial Hospital’s heart specialists are experts in implanting is a permanent pacemaker. A pacemaker is usually implanted under the skin of the chest. It is a small, battery-powered device that sends out small electrical impulses. Those impulses make the heart beat at a normal speed and at a regular rhythm. The battery and a pulse generator create the electrical impulses, and wires attached to the pacemaker transmit the impulses to the heart.
By maintaining an adequate heart rate, the pacemaker device fills in when the heart’s natural pacemaker is not fast enough or if there is a block in the heart’s electrical conduction system.
Impella Temporary Cardiac Assist Device
Memorial Health System also uses the Impella temporary cardiac assist device in cases where patients require more extensive, high-risk interventions that are done through the skin. The Impella heart pump device does some of the work of the heart’s ventricles.
The life-saving Impella helps the ventricles pump blood, which eases the heart’s workload in patients with heart failure. It does this by “pushing” blood from the left ventricle to the ascending aorta. The ascending aorta is the main blood vessel that exits the left heart ventricle.
The full blood circulatory assistance that the device provides allows a patient’s failing heart to rest and heal.
Automated Internal Cardiac Defibrillator (AICD)
The AICD is a small, battery-powered electrical impulse generator. This device is programmed to detect cardiac arrhythmia and correct it by sending a short electrical impulse to the heart. It is implanted (in a process similar to that of a pacemaker) in patients at risk of sudden cardiac death due to ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia.
A catheter ablation is an invasive procedure that removes or terminates a faulty electrical pathway from sections of the hearts of people who are prone to developing cardiac arrhythmias.
Arrhythmias include atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter, supraventricular tachycardias and Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. This procedure may be performed on a patient if the patient’s arrhythmia can’t be controlled with medication.
Cardioversion is a medical procedure where electricity or drugs help an abnormally fast heart rate (tachycardia) or cardiac arrhythmia convert to a normal rhythm. Electrical cardioversion is typically done when medications do not convert the heart to a normal rhythm.
- Diagnostic Cardiac Catheterization — A special dye is injected to trace the movement of blood through the arteries to pinpoint the size and location of plaque build-up.
- Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty (PTCA) — A small balloon is inserted to the point of blockage and inflated to improve the blood flow.
- Coronary STENT Placement — (including drug eluting stents) A small expandable wire tube is inserted into the artery to hold it open.
- Electrophysiology Studies and Ablation