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What happens before a PTCA procedure?

The following are the things you need to know before a percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) procedure:
  • Your physician will explain the procedure to you and offer you the opportunity to ask any questions that you might have about the procedure.
  • You will be asked to sign a consent form that gives your permission to do the test. Read the form carefully and ask questions if something is not clear.
  • Notify your physician if you have ever had a reaction to any contrast dye, or if you are allergic to iodine.
  • Notify your physician if you are sensitive to or are allergic to any medications, latex, tape, and anesthetic agents (local and general).
  • You will need to fast for a certain period of time prior to the procedure. Your physician will notify you how long to fast, whether for a few hours or overnight.
  • If you are pregnant or suspect that you may be pregnant, you should notify your physician.
  • Notify your physician if you have any body piercings on your chest and/or abdomen.
  • Notify your physician of all medications (prescription and over-the-counter) and herbal supplements that you are taking.
  • Notify your physician if you have heart valve disease, as you may need to receive an antibiotic prior to the procedure.
  • Notify your physician if you have a history of bleeding disorders or if you are taking any anticoagulant (blood-thinning) medications, aspirin, or other medications that affect blood clotting. It may be necessary for you to stop some of these medications prior to the procedure.
  • Your physician may request a blood test prior to the procedure to determine how long it takes your blood to clot. Other blood tests may be done as well.
  • Notify your physician if you have a pacemaker.
  • You may receive a sedative prior to the procedure to help you relax.
  • The area around the catheter insertion (groin area) may be shaved.
  • Based upon your medical condition, your physician may request other specific preparation.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.