Thrombectomy/Thrombolysis is a medical procedure used to dissolve abnormal blood clots that impede normal blood circulation damaging vital organs and tissues mechanically or by medicines. It involves the use of x-ray imaging to direct the catheter at the site of blockage for dissolving the clots. The procedure is widely used to manage the risk of embolism, heart attack, and strokes.

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How Thrombectomy/Thrombolysis is performed?

Before the procedure, your physician will take your thorough medical history. He will ask you about any recent illness or medication you are using. You may be advised to stop blood-thinning medicines before the procedure. Females who are pregnant or supposed to be pregnant should tell the healthcare team beforehand as radiation exposure can damage the fetus. You will need to take off your clothing and wear a gown.
During the procedure:
  • You will lie on a procedure table. The healthcare team will place electrodes on your body to record heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen level, and cardiac rhythm.
  • The healthcare team will insert an intravenous line that will be used to inject any required fluid or additional medicines during the procedure.
  • The physician will insert a catheter into your artery under sterile conditions. Local anesthesia may be used to numb the area of insertion.
  • The catheter will be advanced to the site of blockage under X-ray guidance.
  • When the catheter reaches the blocked artery, your physician will insert a contrast dye that will help to take angiograms. At this time, you may feel a metallic taste or headache due to the injection of dye. Angiograms are used to pinpoint the location of the clot.
  • After locating the clots, clot-dissolving medicines are injected at a controlled rate with the help of a special machine. It may take several hours to dissolve the clots. Most clots dissolve in about 24 hours while some may require a longer duration. You will be monitored continuously during the whole process
  • Depending upon the situation, clots may be broken down mechanically. Mechanical breakdown doesn’t require a longer duration of hospitalization.
  • When the clots have been dissolved, the healthcare provider will remove the catheter and will apply pressure at the insertion site to stop any bleeding.
  • After the procedure, you can resume your activities. However, avoid extreme physical activities and driving. You may get pain as a side effect that can be relieved by proper pain management.
    Vascular Health is specialized in vascular care and thrombolytic techniques. To consult with our experts, book an appointment now!

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