Interventional radiologists (IRs) use their expertise in reading X-rays, ultrasound and other medical images to guide small instruments such as catheters through the blood vessels or other pathways to treat disease through the skin. These procedures are typically much less invasive and much less costly than traditional surgery.
Common Uses of Interventional Radiology
An X-ray exam of the arteries and veins to diagnose blockages and other blood vessel problems.
Opens blocked or narrowed blood vessels by inserting a very small balloon into the vessel and inflating it.
Biliary Drainage and Stenting
A stent to open up blocked ducts and allow bile to drain from the liver.
Balloon occluded retrograde transvenous obliteration. Used to treat abnormal bleeding vessels
Central Venous Access
Insertion of a tube to allow patients to receive medication or nutrients directly into the blood stream or so blood can be drawn.
Delivery of cancer-fighting agents directly to the site of a tumor.
Insertion of a port under the skin for the administration of chemotherapy.
Fallopian Tube Catheterization
A treatment for infertility – uses a catheter to open blocked fallopian tubes without surgery.
Feeding tube inserted into the stomach for patients who are unable to take sufficient food by mouth.
Hemodialysis Access Maintenance
Use of angioplasty or thrombolysis to open blocked grafts for hemodialysis.
Minimally invasive procedure to stabilize and alleviate pain from vertebral compression fractures.
Diagnostic test for breast, lung and other cancers; an alternative to surgical biopsy.
Injection of pain medicine directly into joints to alleviate pain.
Percutaneous Ablation of Tumors
Placement of needles/probes directly through the skin to kill tumors without surgery.
Selective Internal Radiation Therapy (SIRT)
Administration of radioactive beads into the blood vessels supplying liver tumors.
A small flexible tube used to treat a variety of medical conditions.
Reinforces a ruptured or ballooning section of an artery (an aneurysm) with a fabric-wrapped stent
Dissolves blood clots by injecting clot-busting drugs at the site of the clot.
TIPS (transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt)
A procedure to improve blood flow and prevent hemorrhage.
Uterine Artery/Fibroid Embolization
Minimally invasive procedure to treat fibroids or post part bleeding, which can prevent hysterectomy.
Varicocele and Pelvic Congestion Syndrome Embolization
Delivery of coils into the abnormal blood vessels to alleviate pain without surgery.
For more information please visit the Society of Interventional Radiology.