Angioplasty and Stent

Angioplasty is a procedure used to open clogged heart arteries. In this procedure, Dr Ntuli inserts a tiny balloon catheter into a blocked blood vessel to help widen it and increase blood flow to the heart.

Angioplasty procedures are often combined with the placement of a small wire mesh tube called a stent. The stent helps open the artery, decreasing its chance of narrowing again. To help keep the artery open, we coat most stents with medication.

Angioplasty is also often used during a heart attack to quickly open a clogged artery and minimise the amount of damage to your heart. The procedure is also used to improve symptoms of blocked arteries, such as shortness of breath and chest pain.

Before having a scheduled angioplasty, Dr Ntuli will review your medical history and do a physical exam before the procedure. He may need to have some routine tests, including blood tests, a chest X-ray, electrocardiogram. In addition, he may perform an imaging test called a coronary angiogram to check if your arteries are blocked and if angioplasty treatment is possible.

Cath labs

Dr Ntuli is the only cardiologist in Cape Town’s Southern Suburbs that has a dedicated catheterization laboratory (Cath Lab) to treat his patients. A cath lab is an examination room which uses special diagnostic imaging equipment to visualize the chambers and arteries of the heart and treat any abnormalities found. Using these state-of-the-art facilities and technology, Dr Ntuli is also able to successfully perform angioplasty procedures and place stents.

The end result

Angioplasty greatly improves blood flow through the previously blocked or narrowed artery. Your chest pain generally should decrease, and you may be able to exercise better.

While your symptoms may improve, it's important to note that having angioplasty and stenting doesn't mean your heart disease goes away. You will need to maintain healthy lifestyle habits and take all the medication that your doctor prescribes.

If you experience similar symptoms to those you had before your procedure, such as chest pain or shortness of breath, contact Dr Ntuli.