Are procedures for atherosclerosis considered to be surgical procedures?

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Eastside Medical Center
Administration
Procedures for atherosclerosis such as bypass surgery, angioplasty, and stent placement are considered to be surgical procedures, but they are actually divided into catheter based or surgical procedures. The catheter based procedures are those where a small incision is made in the body and a catheter is actually fed inside the vessel to the point of interest where devices can be implanted, such as stents, atrial septal closure devices, or clips to the mitral valve. The surgical procedures can further be divided into invasive and minimally invasive surgery. The typical invasive surgery would be the bypass surgery performed with a median sternotomy or "cutting the chest open". The minimal invasive surgeries involve the robot or trocars or (small tubes) placed in incisions in the chest wall without having to "open the patient up". A great deal of research is being done on the minimally invasive procedures to limit the recovery time and the invasiveness of the procedure.
The catheter based procedures appear to be best tolerated especially for angioplasty and stent placement in the midst of a heart attack.