What to Expect in the Catheter Lab
Our Interventional Cath Lab suite is an outpatient department where tests and procedures including angiography, angioplasty, atherectomy and stent placement are performed. The department is fully staffed with a team registered nurses, radiology technologists and lead by our vascular surgeons.
Before the Procedure
Since our interventional Cath Lab suites are located within our main office locations, you will arrive and check in just as you would for a physician visit. The members of the Cath Lab staff are PVA employees who work exclusively in our Cath Lab department. You will be asked to change into a surgical gown for your exam so please wear comfortable, easy to remove clothing. It is also advisable to leave all jewelry and other valuable items at home. Your medical history and treatment services will be reviewed with a staff member so you will know exactly what procedure will be performed. It is important that you discuss all your current medications and drug allergies. Please make sure to instruct the nursing staff if you are allergic to X-ray dye as it will be used during your procedure. Once you are ready, you will be taken in the procedure room.
During the procedure your heart rate, blood pressure and oxygen status will all be closely monitored by the medical staff. For some procedures, both groins and sometimes your arms may need to be shaved and cleansed with an antiseptic solution. You will then be covered with a sterile drape to reduce the risk of infection. Most patients will remain awake during the procedure; however the medical staff can administer medications to aid in relaxation and maintain your comfort. Procedures often last only 30 minutes to an hour but will vary depending on the treatment plan.
After the Procedure
Once your procedure is complete you will be brought back into the Cath Lab suite where the staff will continue to monitor your recovery. It is important for you to remain in bed for a minimum of 2 hours and closely monitored by the Cath lab nurses. Upon your discharged you will be instructed on the acceptable activity level and recover requirements.