AHA Logo Cardiac catheterization, known as the insertion of a catheter in a chamber or vessel of the heart, seems to have great significance in the health domain. According to a recent study, catheterization is an effective tool for tackling heart defects in children. The findings probably offer an extensive inventory of diagnostic and interventional techniques that can be taken into consideration for pediatric patients.

The catheter which is a thin flexible tube inserted into a blood vessel may be used in procedures like angiography. During angiography, physicians possibly employ a catheter to inject dye into the arteries near the heart to illuminate the vessels via X-ray technology. It can supposedly open a valve, enlarge a narrow blood vessel, close a hole in the heart or close off a blood vessel. From around 22 new therapeutic options for congenital heart disease, catheter-based techniques apparently boost blood flow through the heart. These techniques are also assumed to repair inborn heart defects such as holes in the heart, repair or replace faulty valves, remove arterial blockages and many other conditions, including malformed heart chambers.

“What we can offer patients now, versus just 10 or 15 years ago, is remarkably different,” said Timothy F. Feltes, M.D., lead author of the statement and chief of pediatric cardiology and professor of pediatrics at The Ohio State University. “There have been tremendous advances in the procedures, devices, experience and the expertise of the physicians who perform the procedures. As physicians caring for patients with congenital heart disease, we have to look at heart catheterizations a little differently than we have in the past.”

Also several hybrid procedures that use traditional surgical techniques in combination with cauterization for treating conditions were evaluated. These procedures apparently treat conditions like hypoplastic left heart syndrome (severe under development of the left side of the heart) and stent implantation (to widen arteries and keep them open). In conclusion, it was asserted that interventional catheterization procedures can assist in fighting numerous conditions.

The study is published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.