Angiography is the examination of blood vessels using a special contrast agent and utilizing X-rays. The results of angiography will be called normal if blood flow to the heart is normal and there is no blockage.
An angiography that usually takes about half to two hours is generally run in the hospital’s radiology department using X-ray imaging. In short the examination time makes patients usually do not need to stay and can go home on the same day after completion.
Roles and How the Process
Angiography needs to be done to examine some of the following:
- Detects the presence or absence of interference in the blood vessels, such as tears that affect blood flow.
- Evaluate heart blood flow, especially in conditions of heart failure, narrowing of the heart’s blood vessels, and non-specific chest pain.
- Find out the source of bleeding in the body.
- Know how bad atherosclerosis in the heart blood vessels.
- Prepare the operation disorders of blood vessels in the legs .
- Examine certain conditions such as angina , blockage of blood vessels, or anything else pulmonary embolism .
- Detects brain aneurysm due to blockage of blood vessels.
- Observe the number, condition, and location of the renal artery before a kidney transplant is performed.
- Detect blood flow patterns in the tumor and see how many tumors are scattered in the body.
However, angiography is not recommended for anyone with a history of allergies with contrast agents, suffering from blood clotting disorders, kidney damage, having uncontrollable high blood pressure, arrhythmia , anemia, and fever.
Before undergoing an examination, the patient needs to know the details of the course of the examination, the risks that may arise, as well as the possibility of the need to consume sedatives. Patients also need to inform their doctors or health workers if they are pregnant, take strong medications, or have allergies to certain drugs.
In addition, before undergoing this procedure, the doctor may ask the patient to undergo the following checkup:
- General health checks, including physical examination and blood tests.
- Health history, including presence or absence of allergies.
Before the examination, the patient is required not to eat and drink (fasting) for 8 hours before the test, and rest enough on the night before the examination. This angiographic examination is usually performed when the patient is conscious. However, total anesthesia can be given to children undergoing this procedure. Sedatives may be needed to relax. After the patient lies down, the doctor will give local anesthesia and make a small incision in the arteries, generally arteries near the wrist or groin.
The catheter is then inserted into one of the arteries, then directed to the area examined. In order for the blood vessels to be visible, then injected a contrast agent into the blood vessels before the examination begins so that doctors can detect the presence or absence of interference. Sometimes angiography is performed simultaneously with angioplasty , ie insert a small tube (catheter) to open artery narrowing. After the procedure is complete, the patient needs to lie down for several hours to prevent bleeding from incision.
In addition to rest, patients can eat and drink as soon as they are ready. Drinking plenty of water is needed to remove the dye used for the examination. Patients can return to work the next day, but need to avoid heavy exercise or lifting heavy loads for several days.
While generally safe, angiography is at risk of causing such low blood pressure, cardiac tamponade, injury to the heart arteries, irregular heartbeat, stroke, heart attack , kidney damage, and although relatively rare, allergic reactions. Therefore, the physician who performs this procedure already anticipates and prepares all necessary relief equipment when such things occur.