Ask The Doctors: December 2011

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The cardiology community has been engaged in considerable discussion lately regarding the possible advantages of performing heart catheterization procedures, or caths, through the arm. The first step in a heart cath, getting into a major artery, is known to doctors as vascular access. This can be obtained either through the groin, via the femoral artery, or through the arm, via the radial artery in the wrist or the brachial artery in the elbow. The main goal of a cath is to inject contrast dye into the coronary arteries and create an X-ray movie of them, to see if severe narrowings are present. Sometimes, as in your case, stents need to be placed to open them up. The cardiology community has been engaged in considerable discussion lately regarding the possible advantages of performing heart catheterization procedures, or caths, through the arm. The first step in a heart cath, getting into a major artery, is known to…
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