Cardiac Catheterization (cath) involves passing a catheter, a thin flexible tube, through a vein or artery in your arm or groin and into your heart.
Reasons for Cardiac Catheterization
Your physician may perform a cardiac cath procedure to diagnose or to treat heart conditions. It may be used to:
- Take tissue samples (biopsy)
- Find and open blocked or narrowed arteries
- Find and open a narrow or blocked valve in your heart
- Check for coronary artery disease (CAD) before performing major surgery
- Drain fluid from the lining that surrounds your heart
- Repair congenital heart defects, like cardiomyopathy and holes in the heart
Innovative Diagnostic Equipment and Treatment Facilities
North Carolina Heart & Vascular Hospital offers six Catheterization (cath), vascular and interventional radiology Labs provides a high-tech setting for catheterizations, angioplasties, atherectomies, stent placements and brachytherapy. Each suite is equipped with high definition monitors that display extremely detailed real-time images, resulting in fewer x-rays and less radiation exposure for the patient.
The hospital also features two state-of-the-art electrophysiology (EP) labs which allows our physicians to perform diagnostic procedures that can detect an irregular heartbeat in the way the heart's electrical system functions.
Additionally, UNC REX offers MediGuide, a new technology that provides a safer way for patients to have heart procedures. MediGuide incorporates GPS technology to provide a real-time location of a heart catheter and to show the path the catheter needs to follow to reach the problem area of the heart. Typically used to treat atrial fibrillation and other heart rhythm irregularities, MediGuide dramatically reduces the amount of radiation received by the patient. UNC REX is proud to be the third hospital in the nation to offer this technology.