Rutland Regional’s Cardiac Catheterization Lab offers cardiac and vascular patients advanced diagnostic and interventional cardiology care. Our cardiac catheterization laboratory is a specialized procedure area where many of the interventional cardiology procedures are performed. The cardiac cath lab is is also used to find heart, artery and valve blockages, as well as other circulatory and cardiac problems.
Specialized minimally invasive cardiac catheterization procedures such as diagnostic coronary angiogram are performed by board-certified interventional cardiologists. Board-certified general surgeons who specialize in vascular surgery use the lab to treat varicose veins, perform femoral bypass and other minimally invasive vascular surgery procedures.
Interventional cardiology procedures also include the implantation of pacemakers. These small devices, inserted under the skin in the chest, help arrhythmia and heart failure patients maintain a healthy heart rate and rhythm.
Patients who need interventional cardiology procedures such as stents, defibrillators or bypass surgery are referred or transported to partner hospital The University of Vermont Medical Center.
A coronary angiogram is a special X-ray test. It’s done to find out if your coronary arteries are blocked or narrowed, where and by how much. An angiogram can help your doctor see if you need treatment such as angioplasty or stent, coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG) or medical therapy.
What happens during an angiogram?
- You may be given medicine to relax you, but you will stay awake.
- You go to the hospital’s heart catheterization laboratory (“cath lab”).
- You lie on a table near a camera and other equipment.
- Your doctor numbs a spot on your groin or arm and inserts a thin tube (catheter) into an artery and up to the heart. This will hurt no more than a blood test.
- Special fluid goes through the catheter so arteries show up well on the X-ray.
- X-rays are taken as the fluid goes through the artery.
- You may be asked to hold your breath or cough.
- By studying the X-ray images, the doctor can see any problems with your coronary arteries.
- If you wish, you can see the X-ray pictures on the screen during or after the test.