Using real-time x-rays ("fluoroscopy"), we can advance small tubes into the blood vessels and inject dye ("contrast") to diagnose blockages and other blood vessel problems. The dye makes the artery or vein visible so we can treat the problem.
Arteriovenous Malformations (AVMs) and Aneurysms
Sometimes blood vessels can grow and/or connect in your body in ways that can be dangerous to your health. If left untreated, these abnormalities ("AVMs" and "aneurysms") can rupture, causing life-threatening internal bleeding. Our interventional radiologists can often treat these abnormalities without surgery by guiding small catheters to the site and injecting a substance that blocks the supply of blood to the affected blood vessels or even reconstruct the blood vessels to flow properly.
By inserting a small balloon inside the blood vessel and inflating it, blocked or narrowed arteries or veins can be opened to allow better blood flow. These techniques can be used to unblock clogged arteries in the legs or arms called peripheral arterial disease ("PAD") or peripheral vascular disease ("PVD"). Other areas of blocked vessels include the vessels supplying your organs such as kidneys and intestines.
Biliary Drainage and Stenting
Bile is an important fluid which forms in your liver and flows into your intestine to help with digestion. If these tubes (or "ducts") are blocked, you can become jaundice with yellow skin coloration and itching. Using advanced imaging techniques, interventional radiologists can use small tubes and stents to open up the blocked ducts and allow bile to drain from the liver.
Interventional radiologists can pinpoint the area of internal bleeding with angiography and inject a clotting substance, such as a gel, foam or tiny coils, through a thin catheter to stop the bleeding. This prevents opening your body up with major surgery to find the cause of the bleeding, which is usually unsuccessful.
Central Venous Access
Direct access to your bloodstream is important to treat many diseases and problems. By inserting a small tube beneath the skin and directly into the blood vessels, patients can receive medication or nutrients directly or so blood can be drawn, without repeatedly poking your skin. Such accesses include central venous lines, peripherally inserted central catheters ("PICC" lines), temporary and tunneled dialysis catheters, "Hickman" catheters, and chest ports.
Cancers can grow and move ("metastasis") throughout your body. By delivering cancer-fighting agents like chemotherapy directly to the site of the tumors, you can have maximum results without as many side effects. Typically, we use this technique to treat cancers in the liver.
By delivery clotting agents (such as gleam, plastic particles, or metal coils) directly to an area that is bleeding or causing problems, such as an aneurysm or a fibroid tumor in the uterus, we can prevent major surgeries and have immediate results.
Our interventional radiologists can insert feeding tubes directly from the skin into stomach for those patients who are unable to eat food by mouth. These newer techniques do not involve placing a camera down your throat or general anesthesia.
Hemodialysis Access Maintenance
Blood needs to be quickly removed and replaced into your body in order for dialysis to be successful. Once a surgeon creates a fistula or graft (connections of blood vessels under the skin) to be used for dialysis, we take pride at the IVC to ensure the flow through those vessels always works. Any areas of narrowing or blockage in the blood vessels, will be immediately treated using angioplasty, venoplasty or thrombolysis.
High Blood Pressure
In some patients with high blood pressure, the condition is caused by a narrowing of the arteries in the kidneys. The problem, called renal hypertension, often can be treated with a small balloon or stent to keep the vessel open.
Infection and Abscess Drainage
Patients with a variety of illnesses may develop an area of persistent infection (abscess) in the body. The infection can be drained by inserting a catheter through a small nick in the skin and to the site of the infection, allowing the pus to drain out of your body.
Our advanced imaging techniques can find small areas of abnormal growth in your body which can lead to cancer. Once these areas are identified, it is important to obtain a tiny sample of the tissue for cancer testing. Using our imaging expertise, we can guide a small needle to the spot in your body to biopsy the tissue. For most patients, this has completely replaced the traditional "open" surgical biopsies.
Radiofrequency, Microwave, and Cryo- Ablation
Many small tumors in your body can be quickly treated and eliminated using heat or cold energy. Radiofrequency (RF) or microwave ablation "cooks" the tumor once a small needle is placed into it. Alternatively, our interventionalists may decide that "freezing" the tumors with cryoablation is the best to kill the cancerous cells.
A small flexible tube made of plastic or wire mesh, used to treat a variety of medical conditions (e.g., to hold open clogged blood vessels or other pathways that have been narrowed or blocked by tumors or obstructions).
A wire mesh wrapped in a fabric material which can be placed inside vessels or ducts in your body. These devices help to treat a ruptured or ballooning section of an artery (called an "aneurysm"). Stent grafts are also known as "endografts".
Clots can form anywhere inside arteries and veins. If these blockages are not removed, it can cause long-term damage to your body. Thrombolysis is an advanced technique developed and performed by interventional radiologists which dissolves blood clots by injecting clot-busting drugs at the site of the clot. We can treat deep vein thrombosis in the leg to prevent permanent disability and swelling, treat pulmonary clots to improve respiratory function, and treat clots in your intestinal arteries to prevent long-term damage requiring surgery.
TIPS (Transjugular Intrahepatic Portosystemic Shunt)
By using our advanced imaging techniques, we can connect blood vessels inside the liver using a small stent. This life-saving procedure is typically performed on patients who have hardening of the liver (or "cirrhosis"). The improved blood flow will decrease the amount of fluid forming inside the belly ("ascites") and eliminate or stop life-threatening internal bleeding.
Urinary Tract Obstruction
The ureter carries urine from the kidneys to the bladder and sometimes becomes blocked by kidney stones or other obstructions. Our interventional radiologists can insert a catheter through a small nick in the skin directly into the blocked kidney. We can then work with your urologist to remove the stones or place small stents to allow the kidney to drain properly.
Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE)
An embolization procedure of uterine arteries to stop life-threatening bleeding after childbirth. This can potentially preventing hysterectomy, allowing a woman to maintain her ability to become pregnant in the future. The same procedure is used to treat fibroid tumors, called a uterine fibroid embolization (or "UFE").
Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE)
By using embolization techniques which cuts off the blood supply to uterine fibroids, our experts can eliminate the growths and symptoms, preventing a major surgery or even a hysterectomy. Symptoms such as heavy bleeding, cramping, and back and leg pain will resolve after the treatment.
Varicocele Embolization/ Pelvic Congestion Syndrome
Dilated veins (or "varicose") can even form inside the scrotum in men and deep pelvis in the women. A minimally invasive technique developed by interventional radiologists, allows these veins to be closed in less than 30 minutes. If these veins are not treated, they can cause infertility, constipation, and persistent pain.
Varicose Vein Treatment
Bulging veins throughout your legs is not normal. By closing these veins (called "saphenous veins") through only a tiny nick and sealing catheters, the blood will flow through the deeper veins. This will cause the symptoms of pain, swelling, and skin changes to resolve. Smaller veins can be injected with medication or simply removed (called a "microphlebectomy" procedure).
Vena Cava Filter Placement & Removal
A tiny cage-like device that is inserted in a blood vessel to break up clots and prevent them from reaching the heart or lungs. The filters can prevent the blood clots in your legs from going to your heart or lungs ("pulmonary embolus").
A pain treatment for fractured vertebra in which medical-grade bone cement is injected into the bones in your spine ("vertebrae").