Coronary artery disease is a situation that reason impaired blood flow in the arteries that supply blood to the heart. It is also known as coronary heart disease (CHD), and if uncontrolled it can lead to a heart attack. It is a general heart situation and also one of the leading reasons of death. Hence, it is crucial that coronary artery disease must get diagnosed and treated as early as possible.

Clearing a clogged artery in the heart once necessary a full-blown operation such as open-heart surgery. However, today interventional procedures can treat coronary artery disease and open up blocked arteries with minimal intervention.

What is Radial Artery Intervention?

Today angiography and interventions on heart arteries like stenting can be done by accessing radial artery. The radial artery supplies the hand with the blood and is the same artery through which the pulse is felt. Performing angiography through radial artery present numerous benefits including rapid improvement and less bleeding.

The radial artery is present in the wrist and is used as an entry point for the catheter. This procedure is also known as transradial access or the transradial approach.

The rationale behind Radial Artery Intervention

Reaching the heart through radial artery as opposed to femoral artery has its benefits. The hand has dual arterial supply from radial and ulnar arteries. Together, they form deep and superficial palmar arches. It means the radial artery is not an end artery. It is hold up by the ulnar artery which gives the necessary collateral blood supply. Any occlusion when carrying out radial artery intervention does not compromise vascular supply to the hand, making it a less complex process. Moreover, since the distal radial artery has a superficial course, it is easy to compress the artery using a device. It helps patients mobilise as soon as the arterial sheath is removed after the process.

Benefits of Radial Artery over Femoral Artery for heart Interventions

Typically, angiography is done by put in a catheter into the femoral artery in the groin. However, radial artery access is getting preferable for its significant benefits, including:

Less Bleeding complications

Radial artery intervention has proved to be helpful in cases where a patient is at high risk of bleeding difficulty. It is particularly beneficial in cases of a ‘hostile’ groin – infections, peripheral arterial disease or morbid obesity. Since the radial artery is superficially located and is much lesser in diameter when compared to a femoral artery, haemostasis after transradial procedures is easily obtained. Haemostasis is the first stage of healing any wound. It is the procedure which causes bleeding to stop and keeps the blood within a damaged blood vessel. Less bleeding also leads to fewer vascular surgery complications and can be done for the majority of percutaneous coronary interventions (PCIs).

Faster Recovery with early mobilization and discharge

One crucial advantage of radial artery right of entry over the femoral route is the rapid mobilization of the patient and earlier discharge from the hospital. According to various trials, the hospital stay was significantly shorter in case of transradial diagnostic coronary angiography when compared to the femoral artery route. The development of percutaneous procedures to diagnose and treat coronary artery disease has transformed the lives of many patients. In fact, patients do not have to lie still and can get discharged the same day after a successful radial artery intervention.

Better Outcomes and survival

In heart attack patients it is immediately requisite to open the blocked heart artery as soon as possible and best done within 90 minutes or less of arrival to the hospital. Access to the heart matters as such patients are given strong blood thinners before the process and access through leg artery can lead to bleeding in the thigh which can be difficult to control.

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