Coronary angioplasty with balloon

Deflated and inflated balloon in narrowed artery, and widened artery

Coronary angioplasty is a procedure that uses a thin tube called a catheter to open a narrowed or blocked coronary artery. Coronary arteries are the blood vessels that bring oxygen to the heart muscle.

During the angioplasty procedure, a thin flexible tube (catheter) is inserted through an artery in the groin or wrist and is carefully guided into a coronary artery. After the tube reaches the narrowed or blocked part of the artery, a small balloon at the end of the tube is inflated. The balloon may remain inflated for a short time. The pressure from the inflated balloon presses fat and calcium deposits (plaque) against the wall of the artery to improve blood flow.

Current as of: January 10, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Rakesh K. Pai MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine
Stephen Fort MD, MRCP, FRCPC - Interventional Cardiology
Heather Quinn MD - Family Medicine
Caroline S. Rhoads MD - Internal Medicine

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