A procedure performed on the vessels in the heart is known as Coronary Angioplasty and Coronary Angiography. ‘Angio’ in Greek refers to blood vessel, and ‘plasty’ refers to process of forming. Angioplasty refers to formation or repair of the affected blood vessel. ‘Gram’ in Angiogram refers to a measure in Latin. So, Angiogram refers to analysis or record the condition of blood vessels.
Angiography or Coronary Angiogram is a process where X-rays are used to study the condition of blood vessels in the arms, chest, or head. Any obstruction of the blood vessels is identified, recorded and reported to the consulting Cardiologist / Doctor. Pregnant women and people with a history of asthma, kidney problems and diabetes are not considered for Angiogram.
The angiogram is performed by placing a catheter in an artery or vein to be reviewed. An iodine dye is injected into the artery, which allows an x-ray to view the exact site of any blockage or tear in an artery. The results from angiogram can be viewed on traditional x-ray films, and with new technology, they can also be viewed as digital pictures.
An angioplasty is a procedure of opening any obstructed vessels with a balloon catheter, which is inflated to reopen the blocked vessel.
Angioplasty is not considered the proper treatment for someone who is suffering from multiple blocked vessels or arteries; instead, doctors prefer to use open heart surgery. People who have suffered minor strokes and heart attacks are prime candidates for both procedures to be done.
Angioplasty is done with a catheter by entering it through the skin and into an artery in the general location of the blockage. At the end of the catheter is a small balloon which is inflated to stretch the artery back to its original size and push the blockage through. After the procedure is completed another angiogram is done to ensure that the blockage is cleared and that there are no other problems to address. Follow up appointments are needed to ensure the artery does not become blocked further down from the same fat that made the first one.
While the two procedures are similar in helping arterial and vessel blockages, they are different in what they do. An angiogram is finding the source of the problem, and an angioplasty is repairing and restoring the problem.
- angiogram are the medical recording and analysis of a potential blood vessel which is not working properly. Angioplasty is the process of unblocking a clogged or blocked blood vessel or artery.
- angiogram are performed with a specialized x-ray machine and iodine, and an angioplasty is done with a balloon catheter.
- Both procedures use a catheter to reach the site of any problem, however, one injects iodine and the other has a balloon on the end.