The MUSC Heart & Vascular Center offers state-of-the-art cardiac catheterization laboratories that are staffed around the clock with specialists in the management of patients needing emergency catheterization, along with experienced cardiovascular surgeons.
Cardiac catheterization is a test used to evaluate the heart and the coronary arteries. During a cardiac catheterization, a contrast material is injected into the coronary arteries to trace the movement of blood. A thin flexible tube called a catheter is threaded through a blood vessel in the arm or groin and into the heart. Movement of the dye through the heart’s chambers and blood vessels is visualized using an X-ray technique called fluoroscopy.
The purpose of cardiac catheterization is to determine whether the coronary arteries are diseased, and if so, identify the size and location of plaque that may have accumulated from atherosclerosis. This is generally done to determine the need for bypass surgery or angioplasty. If the coronary arteries have blockages, the physician can use the catheter to open them and restore normal blood flow to the heart.
Our cardiac catheterization labs located in MUSC's South Carolina heart center offer a complete range of basic, complex and emergency procedures, including:
- Balloon angioplasty
- Coronary stenting
- Drug-eluting stents (DES)
- Laser and rotational atherectomy
- Peripheral vascular balloon angioplasty and stenting
- Aortic and mitral valvuloplasty
- Percutaneous closure of atrial septal defect (ASD) and patent foramen ovale
Find more information on MUSC's top notch South Carolina heart center along with information on its professional cardiovascular surgeons and other heart programs now.