Angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that widens narrow or blocked arteries. It is particularly helpful for people with diseases like Atherosclerosis or Coronary heart disease. The arteries can become blocked up over time from deposits of plaque. Plaques may be fats, cholesterol, cells, and other substances.
Angioplasty is often used to restore blood flow to the heart in people who have coronary arteries affected by atherosclerosis. This may help to reduce heart muscle damage after a heart attack, reduce the risk of heart attacks and death, and improve certain CHD symptoms, such as angina (chest pain) and shortness of breath.
Angioplasty may also be used to help with other issues, including:
- Atherosclerosis in the legs or arms, also known as peripheral artery disease
- Renal vascular hypertension, or high blood pressure caused by the narrowing of the kidney arteries, usually from atherosclerosis
- Carotid artery stenosis, in which the neck arteries supplying blood to the brain become narrowed