At RIA Endovascular, our focus is on getting you back to the life you love to live. With modern techniques and devices, many procedures that historically required open surgery can now be done in less invasive ways.
Interventional Radiology Helps Shorten Hospital Stays
From blunt splenic trauma to cancer care, IR advances are expediting patient treatment
BY RICHARD DARGAN
May 10, 2021
IR Targets Spectrum of Conditions
Interventional radiology has also reduced hospitalization times in patients treated for peripheral artery disease (PAD), a blockage or narrowing in the blood vessels that affects more than 200 million people worldwide, according to the American Heart Association.
PAD most commonly affects the legs and feet, Dr. Haslam said. Left unchecked, PAD often requires amputation of the lower leg.
“Surgeons can perform grafts that bypass the obstructed area, but the surgery requires the harvesting of a vein from the patient’s own leg. This contributes to the morbidity of the bypass and not every patient will have a suitable vein that can be used,” Dr. Haslam said.
Endovascular revascularization is a minimally invasive interventional radiologic alternative. Since the procedure requires only a very small hole in the artery, patients recover quickly. It can be performed in one day, or even on an outpatient basis in some instances.
“The minimally invasive approach leads to fewer complications than surgery with a lower 30-day mortality and significant cost savings,” Dr. Haslam said.
For patients with uterine fibroids, fibroid embolization can be performed in one day and is sometimes more effective than surgical alternatives and may prevent a hysterectomy and more lengthy hospital stays, Dr. Haslam said.
Interventional radiology procedures are also shortening hospitalization time for cancer patients. For example, interventional radiologists can treat small renal cancers with microwave ablation or cryotherapy in one day. Previously, this would have required a partial nephrectomy and several days in the hospital. The liver’s unique vasculature makes it particularly amenable to cancer treatment with minimally invasive ablative procedures. Endovascular delivery of radioactive beads into the liver has shown success in treating unresectable primary and metastatic liver tumors. Treatments can be done on an outpatient basis.
“This type of selective targeted internal radiotherapy has only become possible in recent years,” Dr. Haslam said.
Prostate artery embolization has proven to be an excellent alternative to more invasive treatments for debilitating urinary obstruction due to benign prostatic enlargement. The development of smaller steerable microcatheters, cone beam CT and guide wires with better torque have all helped improve outcomes.