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Catheter Embolization

What is Catheter Embolization?
Embolization is a minimally invasive treatment that occludes, or blocks, one or more blood vessels or vascular channels of malformations (abnormalities).

In a catheter embolization procedure, medications or synthetic materials called embolic agents are placed through a catheter into a blood vessel to prevent blood Flow to the area.

Why should I do it?
Catheter embolization is performed to:

  • Control or prevent abnormal bleeding, including:
  • Bleeding that results from an injury, tumor or gastrointestinal tract lesions such as ulcer or diverticular disease
  • Long menstrual periods or heavy menstrual bleeding that results from fibroid tumors of the uterus.
  • Occlude or close off the vessels that are supplying blood to a tumor, especially when the tumor is difficult or impossible to remove.
  • Eliminate an arteriovenous malformation (AVM) or arteriovenous fistula (AVF) (abnormal connection or connections between arteries and veins).
  • Treat aneurysms (a bulge or sac formed in a weak artery wall)
  • Treat varicoceles (enlarged veins) in the scrotum that may be a cause of infertility.

Any preparations needed?

  • Prior to your procedure, your blood may be tested to determine how well your kidneys are functioning and whether your blood clots normally.
  • You should report to your doctor all medications that you are taking, including herbal supplements, and if you have any allergies, especially to
  • local anesthetic medications, general anesthesia or to contrast materials containing iodine.)
  • Your physician may advise you to stop taking aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or blood thinners for a specified period of time before Your procedure.
  • Also inform your doctor about recent illnesses or other medical conditions.
  • Women should always inform their physician and x-ray technologist if there is any possibility that they are pregnant.
  • You will receive specific instructions on how to prepare, including any changes that need to be made to your regular medication schedule.
  • You will likely be instructed not to eat or drink anything after midnight before your procedure. Your doctor will tell you which medications you may take in the Morning.