Interventional radiology is used during a range of treatment techniques which are guided by real-time images during scanning.
This approach avoids the need for open or laparoscopy (keyhole) surgery, and helps to ensure the treatment is given as accurately as possible.
The type of radiology used are:
Many interventional radiology procedures are life-saving or life-changing. They can be used to remove the blood clot causing a stroke, drain organs with potentially deadly infections or stop severe, life-threatening bleeding.
Procedures using interventional radiology
A way of showing up blood vessels on a special X-ray machine. Using a fluid called ‘contrast medium’ to outline the insides of the vessels, a picture is produced, which is rather like a road map of the arteries or veins.
An Angioplasty is a way of re-opening a blocked artery by inserting a fine plastic tube, called a catheter, through the blockage and inflating a small balloon on the catheter.
Arthrogram and Joint Injection
‘Arthrogram’ means picture of a joint following an injection of a contrast medium. An Arthrogram may be performed to obtain information about the joint or when an injection of medication is required into a joint.
A Carotid Angiogram is a way of showing up blood vessels in the neck and head on a special X-ray machine. Using a fluid called ‘contrast medium’ to outline the insides of the vessels, a picture is produced, which is rather like a road map of the arteries.
This is where a needle is used to take a small piece of your liver. The sample will be looked at under a microscope and will help your doctors to diagnose and treat your condition. (See Transjugular Liver Biopsy also).
Percutaneous Biliary Drainage and Stent
You have what is called “obstructive jaundice” which is usually caused by a blockage in the bile duct between the liver and the duodenum. In order to relieve the blockage, a tube is inserted through the skin and into the liver to drain the bile. The drainage tube takes bile fluid from the liver into a collecting bag outside the body.
The tubes draining your kidneys sometimes become blocked. This can be due to a stone or a blood clot and infection may be present. This procedure inserts a catheter through the skin and into the kidney to drain it. The catheter drains into a collecting bag outside the body.
Transjugular Liver Biopsy
Most people have a biopsy taken by a needle passed directly through the skin into the liver. Some people, however, have abnormal blood clotting or have fluid around their liver. For these people it is safer to pass the needle from a vein in the neck (the jugular vein) to the inside of the liver. This way a hole is not made on the outside of the liver and the rare risk of serious bleeding is made even less likely. (See Liver Biopsy also).
Vena Cava Filter
A Vena Cava Filter is a small, metal device about an inch long, shaped rather like the spokes of an umbrella. The filter is placed in the Vena Cava, which is the large vein in the abdomen that brings blood back from the legs and pelvis, towards the heart. If there are blood clots in the veins in the legs or pelvis, these could pass up the Vena Cava and into the lungs and cause severe illness or even death. The filter will trap these blood clots and prevent them entering the lungs and causing problems.