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Peripheral Angioplasty

Synonyms: Percutaneous Transluminal Angioplasty (PTA), Percutaneous Transluminal Peripheral Angioplasty

What is Peripheral Angioplasty?

Peripheral Angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure which is used to open narrowed arteries of the legs (most commonly iliac arteries causing cramps when walking, known as claudication), those to the brain known as the carotid arteries (causing stroke) and the arteries to the kidneys (causing high blood pressure). These conditions belong to the group of Peripheral Vascular Disease. Another condition may be ballooning of the artery called aneurysm. Aneurysms commonly occur in abdominal aorta where it manifests itself with abdominal pain or tenderness and a throbbing mass in the abdomen. Peripheral Vascular Disease is diagnosed by a procedure called angiogram which is similar to Coronary Angiogram. Peripheral Angioplasty is very similar to Coronary Angioplasty where arteries of the heart are narrowed due to atherosclerosis (Coronary Artery Disease). The blockage in the arteries is caused by deposition of fat in the form of plaques which accumulate along the arterial wall.

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Where can I get Peripheral Angioplasty?

Country Cost with MedSolution
India $750 (inquire)
Cost of procedure performed in the US: $18,171.
All prices are in US dollars and include the cost of the procedure and minimum hospital stay. Estimates and minimum hospital stay will vary depending upon individual needs and requirements.

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What does the procedure for Peripheral Angioplasty involve?

The procedure for Peripheral Angioplasty usually comprises of three steps: Step one of Peripheral Angioplasty, also known as artherectomy involves removal of blockage (plaque) from your peripheral artery either by laser or with specialized instruments to cut the plaque away and clear the arterial channel. The second step of Peripheral Angioplasty makes use of a balloon. An un-inflated balloon is inserted with the help of a guide wire to the site of blockage. The balloon is then inflated, which as a result enlarges the blood channel and increases blood flow through the artery. It is interesting to note that Peripheral Angioplasty can reduce a 70 - 90% blockage to about 20 - 30%. Step three of Peripheral Angioplasty consists of implanting a mesh stent which is tightly mounted on the Peripheral Angioplasty balloon into the walls of blocked artery. The stent can either be made of inert bare metal or it can be coated with a medication that prevents the surrounding blood from clotting and thus minimizes the chances of re-stenosis of the artery. The balloon is then deflated and removed leaving the stent in place permanently to hold the artery open. In the procedure of Peripheral Angioplasty, the peripheral arteries are accessed through a puncture made in the groin (femoral artery). Depending upon the extent of narrowing, all three steps may or may not be carried out. The procedure of Peripheral Angioplasty can take 30 minutes to several hours depending on the number of blockages being treated. You will injected blood thinning medication to prevent clot formation during Peripheral Angioplasty procedure.

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Who is an ideal candidate for Peripheral Angioplasty?

If you have been diagnosed with intermittent claudication i.e. aches, pain, cramps, or tightness in the calves, thighs, hips or buttocks when walking, which is relieved with a few moments rest, if you have leg ulcers or gangrene, if you have an aneurysm (abdominal aorta or cerebral artery), if you are a smoker who experiences numbness, tingling or coldness of legs and feet, if you suffer from high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, a family history of heart or vascular disease, and are overweight with symptoms of peripheral vascular disease, then you are an ideal candidate for Peripheral Angioplasty.

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What to expect during the pre-operative period of Peripheral Angioplasty?

Peripheral Angioplasty is performed as an outpatient procedure. You would be instructed to avoid eating or drinking for at least 6 - 8 hours before the procedure. Your doctor may prescribe you aspirin several days prior to Peripheral Angioplasty procedure to prevent blood clots from forming. Quit smoking and exercise regularly as a first step towards a healthier lifestyle.

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What is the recovery period like following Peripheral Angioplasty?

You will be hospitalized overnight most probably in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and will be allowed to go home the following day after the Peripheral Angioplasty. There will be a bruise or lump at the site of stent implantation which will resolve in the next few days. You may be prescribed aspirin or anti-platelet medication for the rest of your life following implantation of stent during the Peripheral Angioplasty procedure. However, the good news is that your medications to relieve your symptoms of Peripheral Vascular Disease will decrease or may be discontinued completely. Watch for bleeding, swelling, pain or discomfort at the incision site, feeling of faintness, weakness, fever, redness or swelling in the leg which was used for Peripheral Angioplasty procedure. If you develop pain or shortness of breath following Peripheral Angioplasty, contact your physician immediately. Protect your feet from injury, heat or cold, refrain from wearing tight, constrictive clothing like tight stocking or garter, avoid bending, lifting, climbing the stairs or walking too much, exercise on a regular basis, learn to cope with stress and practice good foot hygiene.

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What is the outcome of Peripheral Angioplasty?

Peripheral Angioplasty has a success rate of almost 95% with the chances of re-stenosis occurring in 5% of the patients. This procedure is less painful and allows you to go back to your daily activities quickly. This means that you will not have the symptoms of Peripheral Vascular Disease any more. Insertion of Drug Eluting Stents have potentially improved the clinical outcome of the procedure of Peripheral Angioplasty.

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B . R . A . N . D . of Peripheral Angioplasty

Benefits of Peripheral Angioplasty

  • Quicker and less painful recovery
  • Short hospital stay, does not require general anesthesia
  • Small incision
  • Peripheral Angioplasty can be done under local anesthesia
  • Chances of major post-operative complications are minimized

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Risks of Peripheral Angioplasty

  • Allergic reaction to the dye
  • Ruptured artery
  • Bleeding and infection at the site of insertion
  • Arrhythmia
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Kidney failure
  • Rupture or dissection of the artery
  • Re-stenosis

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Alternative of Peripheral Angioplasty

  • Use of clot dissolving drugs or thrombolytic agents – These medications help to burst the clots

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Now or Never

  • Atherosclerosis is a progressive disease. It can affect your arteries supplying blood to your heart, brain, limbs, and other organs of your body. Over time, the inner walls of your arteries become clogged with deposits composed of fat, cholesterol, fibrin (a clotting material found in the blood), cellular waste products, and calcium. Accumulation of these materials cut down the blood supply to your vital organs thus causing either a heart attack (if coronary arteries are obstructed), painful muscle cramping during exercise or even at rest (if a leg artery is obstructed) and stroke (if a neck artery is obstructed). Performing a timely Peripheral Angioplasty accompanied with positive life style changes prevents risks of having a heart attack, stroke, gangrene, and the morbidity and mortality associated with these conditions. As they say “a stitch in time saves nine”

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Decision to have Peripheral Angioplasty

  • Peripheral Angioplasty has revolutionized the treatment of Peripheral Vascular Disease. Implantation of stents during angioplasty procedure reduces the chances of re-stenosis of the artery tremendously. The procedure of Peripheral Angioplasty is certainly not a treatment for Peripheral Vascular Disease however, accompanying lifestyle changes can definitely reduce your chances of further problems and complications.

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Keywords: Coronary Artery Disease, Congestive Heart Failure, Arrhythmia, Stroke, Kidney Failure, Lung Collapse, Coronary Arteries, Heart Attack, Peripheral Vascular Disease, Ischemic Heart Disease, Diabetes, Hypertension, Atherosclerotic Plaque, Chest Pain, Angina, Atherosclerosis, Cholesterol, Hardened and Blocked Arteries, Healthy Lifestyle

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