Insertion sites may be in the groin or the arm.
Atherectomy is a procedure that relieves symptoms of coronary artery disease by improving blood flow to your heart.
During the Procedure
- The skin at the insertion site (usually the groin) is numbed with a local anesthetic. A needle puncture is made so the catheter can be inserted.
- A guide wire is inserted through the guiding catheter (a thin, flexible tube) and moved to the narrow spot in your artery. Your doctor tracks its movement on an angiogram, a special kind of X-ray.
- Then, a special atherectomy catheter carrying a grinding device is positioned at the narrow spot in your coronary artery.
- An abrasive burr near the tip of the catheter grinds the plaque into small particles that float harmlessly away in the bloodstream.
After the Procedure
- Your doctor or nurse will tell you how long to lie down and keep the insertion site still.
- If the insertion site was in your groin, you may need to lie down with your leg still for several hours.
- A nurse will check the insertion site and your blood pressure. Before going home, you may have a chest X-ray and other tests.
- You usually remain in the hospital for several hours or overnight.
Call Your Doctor
Contact your doctor if you have any of the following:
- You have angina (chest pain).
- The insertion site has pain, swelling, redness, bleeding, or drainage.
- You have severe pain, coldness, or a bluish color in the leg or arm that held the catheter.
- You experience blood in your urine, black or tarry stools, or any other kind of bleeding.
- You have a fever over 101°F (38.3°C).