Angiography is a technique whereby blood vessels, which cannot be seen in normal-X rays, can be made visible. It requires injection of a contrast agent (a special dye) before the X-ray is taken.
Angiography is used to diagnose arterial anomalies such as stenoses or aneurysms. It can also be used to act directly on the blood vessels, to remove the anomaly: in which case the procedure is called interventional angiography or angioplasty. The patient is under local anesthesia and is generally conscious during the procedure but feels nothing.
How do I access the services?
The attending physician sends a test request to the angiography unit at Hull Hospital.
This request is evaluated and prioritized by the radiologist. Imaging Department staff will contact you for an appointment.
With interventional radiologists and medical imaging technologists specializing in angiography, who will support you throughout your test. They offer clear explanations and are able to answer your questions.
What to expect?
The test takes from 1 to 2 hours.
You will be asked to lie on a table and the area around where the catheter will be inserted (groin or arm) will be sterilized.
The skin will be numbed using local anesthesia, so you won’t feel any pain. The catheter will then be carefully guided through a vein or artery until it is near the heart. Once the catheter is in place, it will release the special dye into the bloodstream so that clear, detailed X-rays may be taken of the arteries.
It should be noted that there may be a brief sensation of heat due to the injection of the dye, but it should pass quickly. Angiography is a very common procedure which is generally considered safe. In very rare cases the dye may cause nausea, a need to urinate, or even allergic reactions in some people.
- You must abstain from eating, drinking or smoking for 4 hours before the test
- Take care to remain well hydrated (except during the 4 hours before the procedure)
You will be hospitalized prior to the procedure so that nurses can prepare you for the test and follow-up