Cardiac catheterization (also called cardiac cath or coronary angiogram) is a minimally invasive procedure that allows a heart specialist to "see" how your heart is functioning. In non-emergency situations, it is usually an outpatient procedure with recovery in a few hours.
Procedures Using Catheterization
At the Owensboro Health Heart Center, cardiac catheterization is also used to perform several therapeutic procedures to open blocked arteries.
- A mesh tube called a stent may also be used to prop open an artery.
- Cardiologists can also remove plaque from the wall of an artery using a blade or laser-equipped catheter.
Heart Attack Treatment
Local teacher Jim Gauley's chest pains were a sign of a heart attack, but quick treatment by the Owensboro Health cardiac team helped save his heart and get him back in the classroom.
A heart attack (also known as a myocardial infarction) is the damage of heart muscle from the sudden blockage of a coronary artery by a blood clot. As part of a nationwide quality initiative, Owensboro Health has adopted guidelines proven to improve survivability during a heart attack.
When an emergency situation arises, Owensboro Health cardiologists and members of the cath lab team arrive at the hospital in 30 minutes or less, making Owensboro Health a leader in heart attack care. Patients with blocked arteries receive treatment in an average of only 61 minutes, compared to the 90-minute standard established by the American College of Cardiologists and the American Heart Association.
About Our Cath Lab
The Owensboro Health Heart Center contains four cath labs, including:
- (3) cardiovascular labs
- (1) electrophysiology lab
Last year, our team performed 2,635 cardiac procedures, 432 peripheral procedures and 538 electrophysiology or device implant procedures. Cases typically run between 7 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. Monday-Friday.
Medical Director - Roshan Mathew, MD, FACC, FACP
"Our greatest strength is our fabulous staff - they are committed to the safe and effective care of our patients above all."
- Dr. Mathew, from Cath Lab Digest, 1/11/10
Our facility provides services for 10 cardiologists, including nine interventionalists and one electrophysiologist. Our staff also includes:
- 12 full-time registered nurses (RNs)
- 11 full-time radiologic technologists (RTs)
- 1 material tech
Each staff member has a critical-care-related background, trains under an experienced preceptor, and is evaluated quarterly for skill development.
- American College of Cardiology - National Cardiovascular Data Registry
- HealthGrades quarterly report
- Patient satisfaction through Press Ganey
- Regular staff and peer review
We monitor a number of quality measures, including the time it takes for a heart attack patient to receive treatment after entering the ER (door-to-balloon time).
Where to Go
To check in for your catheterization procedure, visit the Heart Center desk, located in the Outpatient Concourse. You can reach this area through the hospital's main entrance; just go left past the information desk.
Learn More About Cardiac Catheterization
Learn more about cardiac catheterization at our Health Encyclopedia.
Visit our Heart Education section for a comprehensive guide to heart disease, surgeries, and preventative measures you can take for a healthier heart.