Before a scheduled angioplasty, your doctor reviews your medical history and performs a physical exam. You may also have one or more of the following examinations before an angioplasty and stenting procedure:
- Ultrasound. A scanner is passed over the carotid artery to produce images (using sound waves) of the narrowed artery and of the blood flow to the brain.
- Magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) or computerized tomography angiography (CTA). These exams provide highly detailed images of blood vessels by using either radiofrequency waves in a magnetic field or by using X-rays.
- Carotid angiography. During this exam, contrast material (visible on X-rays) is injected into an artery so that vessels can be seen and examined.
You'll receive instructions on what you can or can't eat or drink before angioplasty. Your preparation may be different if you're already staying at the hospital before your procedure.
The night before your procedure:
Jul. 23, 2011
- Follow your doctor's instructions about adjusting your current medications. Your doctor may instruct you to stop taking certain medications before angioplasty, particularly if you take certain diabetes medications or blood thinners.
- Take approved medications with only small sips of water.
- Arrange for transportation home. Angioplasty usually requires an overnight hospital stay, and you won't be able to drive yourself home the next day because of lingering effects of the sedative.
- Greelish JP, et al. Carotid artery stenting and its complications. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed May 9, 2011.
- Naggara O, et al. Anatomical and technical factors associated with stroke or death during carotid angioplasty and stenting: Results from the endarterectomy versus angioplasty in patients with severe symptomatic carotid stenosis (EVA – 3S) trial and systematic review. Stroke. 2011;42:380.
- Lin PH, et al. Carotid artery disease. In: Brunicardi FC, et al. Schwartz's Principles of Surgery. 9th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2010. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=5024036&searchStr=percutaneous+transluminal+angioplasty+of+carotid+artery#5024036. Accessed May 9, 2011.
- Oran NT, et al. Carotid angioplasty and stenting in carotid artery stenosis: Neuroscience nursing implications. Journal of Neuroscience Nursing. 2010;42:3.
- Angioplasty and vascular stenting. Radiological Society of North America. http://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info.cfm?pg=angioplasty. Accessed May 8, 2011.
- Carotid artery disease. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/catd/catd_all.html. Accessed May 9, 2011