Cardiac catheterization

[Translate to Englisch:] Einblick ins Herzkatheterlabor

Cardiac catheterization is what is known as a minimally invasive procedure. This means that no large incisions are required: only small ones.

Our cardiologists use cardiac catheterization to diagnose and treat many different kinds of heart problem. We can answer all your key questions about cardiac catheterization; what the procedure involves, how long it lasts, what potential problems there are, and more.

Cardiac catheterization may be appropriate for you if, for instance, you are suffering acute symptoms such as a heart attack caused by a circulatory disorder of the heart. But cardiac catheterization may also be carried out if your coronary arteries are narrowed or you are suffering from inflammation of the inner lining of the heart (endocarditis).

[Translate to Englisch:] Blick in den Hybrid-OP im Herzzentrum Leipzig
one of our ultramodern hybrid operating theaters

The hybrid operating theater at the Heart Center Leipzig The examination takes place in the cardiac catheter laboratory, which is equipped with highly advanced technical equipment and is similar to an operating theater.

The Heart Center Leipzig has three state-of-the-art biplane cardiac catheterization systems. This is where our interventional cardiologists are based, whether they are performing scheduled procedures or working all hours of the day and night to deal with an emergency.

The Heart Center Leipzig also has its own ultramodern hybrid operating theater, with a cardiac catheterization system and all of the technical equipment required to perform heart surgery. Cardiologists and heart surgeons work side by side here.

Although this treatment takes place very close to, or directly inside the heart itself, you should not be concerned - you are in safe hands. The doctors at the Heart Center Leipzig have plenty of experience in the use of the cardiac catheter, and consider the procedure a matter of routine.

As a result, the risks associated with cardiac catheterization are extremely small. Nevertheless, we will of course explain the potential risks to you before your procedure, particularly in relation to characteristics of your disorder which are specific to you.

  • During cardiac catheterization, a thin, flexible plastic tube - the catheter - is introduced through a vein in your hand or groin and pushed up to your heart.
  • Local anesthetic will be applied at the insertion point.
  • The cardiologist administers a contrast agent, which enables him to see and evaluate the vessels and structures of the heart on an X-ray image.
  • Cardiac catheterization can give the cardiologist valuable information about the functioning and efficiency of your heart.
  • General anesthetic is not usually required. If you are still nervous, however, it may be possible to administer a sedative before the examination begins..

This will depend on the precise reason why cardiac catheterization is being carried out. It may take anything from between half an hour to several hours.

For instance, the following procedures are carried out in the cardiac catheter laboratory:

The procedures carried out in the hybrid operating theater include:

Bedrest is important following cardiac catheterization. You are also advised not to drive a motor vehicle for 24 hours, and to avoid any strenuous activity for a few days. Depending on the nature of the intervention, some patients will remain at the clinic for observation for a few days.

Ready to handle emergencies

A cardiac catheter emergency care team is standing by day and night at the Heart Center Leipzig, ready at any time to treat patients with an acute coronary syndrome or heart attack with balloon dilation or stent implantation. From the time the patient arrives at our clinic, often brought in by the emergency services, it usually takes less than thirty minutes to reopen the affected blood vessel.