Arteries

Imaging & Interventional Specialists

Gethin Williams, MD, PhD

Vascular & Interventional Radiology & Vein Center located in El Paso, TX

Arteries are durable and incredibly hard-working, but as you get older, they harden. When left untreated, hardened arteries increase your risk of more serious issues, including high blood pressure, heart attack, or stroke. At Imaging & Interventional Specialists in El Paso, Texas, Gethin Williams MD, PhD, and the team use minimally invasive treatments to address artery-related health problems. To schedule an appointment, call the office, or book a consultation online today.

Arteries Q&A

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What are arteries?

Arteries are blood vessels responsible for carrying oxygen-rich blood from your heart to other parts of the body. Each artery consists of a tube with three layers –– the intima, the media, and the adventitia.

The largest artery is the aorta. It’s a major pipeline that runs from your heart’s left ventricle and branches off into a vast network of smaller arteries that pump blood to the rest of your body.

What are some common problems that affect the arteries?

Many health problems affect the health and function of the arteries, including:

  • Atherosclerosis
  • Stenosis of the arteries
  • Vasculitis
  • Peripheral artery disease
  • Arterial thrombosis
  • Temporal arteritis
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Carotid artery disease
  • Gangrene

Problems with your arteries can also cause leg cramps or the formation of leg ulcers.

How are issues with the arteries diagnosed?

To diagnose issues with the arteries, the team at Imaging & Interventional Specialists conducts a physical exam, reviews your medical history, and asks about your symptoms and lifestyle. 

After gathering this information, they order additional diagnostics. Depending on your symptoms and health history, this might include ultrasound imaging, blood tests, or angiography. During angiography, your provider injects a contrast dye into your blood vessels. The dye makes your blood more visible, allowing your provider to track its movement using X-rays or a CT scan.

How are issues with the arteries treated?

Whenever possible, the team at Imaging & Interventional Specialists treats artery-related health issues with minimally invasive, pin-hole procedures. These procedures allow for a quick recovery, fewer risks, and fewer complications.

Following an exam, your provider might recommend:

Atherectomy

Atherectomy is a minimally invasive surgery used to remove plaque build-up from within your blood vessels. Removing plaque makes your arteries wider, allowing for improved blood flow. During atherectomy, your provider inserts a thin, flexible tube into one or more vessels. The tube has tiny rotating blades or a laser at the end that cuts through or vaporizes the plaque.

Angioplasty

Angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that involves the use of a small, inflatable balloon. During angioplasty, your provider inserts a catheter into a vein. The catheter has a medical-grade balloon at the end. Once placed, your provider carefully inflates the balloon, pushing the plaque away. This process restores blood flow to a blocked or narrowed artery.

Stent placement

A stent is a tube made of mesh wire. Your provider surgically places the stent into a narrowed or blocked artery, which improves blood flow. The stent remains in your body permanently and significantly lowers your risk of serious heart-related health problems.

To learn more about treatment for problems with the arteries, call the office at Imaging & Interventional Specialists to schedule an appointment or book a consultation online today.

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Services

 

Peripheral Artery Disease

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Angioplasty

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Atheroectomy

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Stent Placement

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Stenosis

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Gangrene

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