Tags: balloon angioplasty | risks | heart | cardiovascular | arteries

Balloon Angioplasty: What Are the Risks?

Monday, 28 April 2014 01:11 AM

Balloon angioplasty is a procedure used for treating peripheral arterial disease, or PAD. Balloon angioplasty of coronary arteries is also called PTA (percutaneous transluminal angioplasty). Arteries that become narrow because of plaque deposits can be opened using balloon angioplasty. The procedure is considered safe and is very common as the standard PAD treatment. In this medical procedure, a small balloon is inserted in the narrowed section of arteries. This balloon is then inflated to help clear the arteries and improve the flow of blood.

How Is It Helpful?
This procedure helps prevent cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks or strokes. Buildup of fatty deposits can block arteries, which can cause severe cardiovascular diseases including life-threatening ones such as heart attacks. Cardiovascular diseases occur due to the buildup of plaque in the walls of arteries of the heart. Angioplasty helps improve the circulation of blood to the heart muscle.
Angioplasty is considered successful for opening arteries in around 90 percent of patients. It restores blood flow from the blocked arteries to the heart. Opening of the arteries leads to increased flow of oxygen and blood to the muscle of the heart. This can also control the risks of heart attack without requiring heart surgery. To determine nature of the blockage, a small tissue sample from the heart may be taken for examination. Various tests and procedures may be conducted to examine the condition of the heart. 
Risks of Balloon Angioplasty  
Balloon angioplasty of coronary arteries is a safe medical procedure. This is the reason for its popularity. However, risks of complications are present both during and after the balloon angioplasty. Similar to the risks associated with all surgical procedures, there are some risks peculiar to balloon angioplasty of coronary arteries. In 5-10 percent cases of balloon angioplasty, risks of complications may arise.
Minor risks can be resolved using minimal treatment. Risks of minor bleeding are present following the procedure. Some discomfort in the procedural site is also among possible risks. These minor risks may develop into major risks and complications due to individual medical histories or conditions of the patient. Some minor risks are listed as follows:
  • Minor bleeding
  • Minor infection
  • Slight discomfort
The major complication associated with balloon angioplasty is distal embolization. Plaque pieces break off after the surgery in this condition. These pieces travel further down the leg to the toes. When these pieces become large, they block arteries in the leg and can thereby restrict the flow of blood.

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Balloon angioplasty is used for treating peripheral arterial disease. Plaque deposits in blocked arteries, which increases risk of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attack or stroke, are opened using this procedure. Although a safe procedure, it involves some risks, similar to other surgeries.
balloon angioplasty, risks, heart, cardiovascular, arteries
Monday, 28 April 2014 01:11 AM
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