Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI)
We offer percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), or angioplasty to treat blocked arteries caused by coronary artery disease. A PCI restores blood flow to the heart without open heart surgery.
We use PCI to treat heart attack patients who are acutely (suddenly) ill as well as those who have a blockage, but have not yet had a heart attack
How PCI Works
During PCI, a thin catheter with a balloon at the tip is inserted into a vein or artery in the groin or leg area. It is then guided to the heart, where the balloon is inflated in the blocked or narrowed artery. This immediately opens blood flow to the heart.
General anesthesia usually isn’t needed during PCI. Depending on your condition, the procedure can take up to a few hours.
Once the blocked area is expanded with the balloon, your interventional cardiologist will typically insert a stent, which is a mesh metal coil that keeps the artery open. Your doctor may prescribe antiplatelet medication to prevent clots from forming after a stent is placed.
Using stents to treat heart conditions can significantly improve a person’s quality of life, without the recovery needed from open heart surgery. Stent procedures also have good long-term outcomes.