Interventional

Interventional radiologists are highly trained medical professionals who play a critical role in modern health care. Their expertise lies in utilizing advanced imaging techniques – treating a wide range of medical conditions –  through minimally invasive procedures.

 

Interventional radiologists at Wake Radiology are instrumental in enhancing patient care, often avoiding more invasive surgeries and reducing recovery times. With their ability to precisely target and treat specific areas within the body, interventional radiologists are essential partners in achieving optimal patient outcomes across various medical specialties.

How an Interventional Study Is Performed

Interventional radiology procedures are conducted with precision and expertise using advanced imaging guidance. Typically, the process begins with the patient lying on an examination table, and a local anesthetic may be administered to numb the area of interest. Interventional radiologists then use techniques like fluoroscopy, ultrasound, CT scans, or MRI to visualize the internal structures in real-time. Through small incisions or catheters, they navigate specialized instruments to the target area. These minimally invasive techniques enable them to perform a wide range of procedures, such as angioplasty, embolization, stent placement, or biopsy, with minimal discomfort and risk to the patient. The real-time imaging feedback ensures accuracy and safety throughout the procedure. Once completed, patients typically experience shorter recovery times and reduced post-operative discomfort compared to traditional surgical methods, making interventional radiology a vital component of modern medical care.

Common Interventional Studies

Abscesses and Fluid Collections

Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists play a crucial role in managing fluid collections and abscesses by using minimally invasive techniques guided by medical imaging. Here are some common approaches they use:

  1. Image-Guided Drainage: Interventional radiologists use imaging modalities such as ultrasound, CT scans, or fluoroscopy to precisely locate and assess fluid collections or abscesses. They then insert a thin, hollow tube known as a catheter into the affected area, allowing for the controlled drainage of the fluid. This helps to relieve symptoms, reduce infection risk, and aid in the healing process.
  2. Abscess Aspiration: In the case of an abscess, a collection of infected fluid or pus, Wake Radiology interventional radiologists can perform abscess aspiration. They insert a needle into the abscess under image guidance, withdraw the infected material, and send it for culture to identify the specific pathogens causing the infection.
  3. Catheter Placement: For larger or more persistent fluid collections, such as seromas or lymphoceles, interventional radiologists may place catheters or drainage tubes that can be left in place for an extended period. This allows for ongoing drainage and monitoring, reducing the risk of recurrent collections.
  4. Percutaneous Drainage: When fluid collections or abscesses are located deep within the body, interventional radiologists can often access them percutaneously, meaning they insert instruments through the skin without the need for open surgery. This minimizes trauma, reduces recovery time, and lowers the risk of complications.
  5. Abscess Treatment: In some cases, particularly for abscesses, interventional radiologists may instill antibiotics, antifungal agents, or other medications directly into the abscess cavity through the drainage catheter. This localized treatment can enhance the effectiveness of antibiotic therapy.
  6. Image-Guided Monitoring: Throughout the drainage or treatment process, interventional radiologists continue to use medical imaging to monitor the progress and ensure that the drainage catheter or tube remains appropriately positioned.
  7. Catheter Removal: Once the fluid collection or abscess has been successfully managed, the interventional radiologist will remove the catheter or drainage tube in a minimally invasive manner, typically during an outpatient visit.

    Interventional radiology at Wake Radiology offers a less invasive and highly effective approach to managing fluid collections and abscesses, providing relief to patients while minimizing the need for more extensive surgical procedures. This approach is particularly valuable in cases where surgery may carry higher risks or complications.

Biliary Obstruction

Wake Radiology’s interventional radiology team plays a crucial role in the diagnosis and treatment of biliary obstruction, a condition that occurs when there is a blockage in the bile ducts that carry bile from the liver to the small intestine. Here are some key aspects of their role:

  1. Biliary Drainage: Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists perform percutaneous transhepatic biliary drainage, a minimally invasive procedure to relieve the blockage and allow the bile to flow properly. This is especially important for patients with obstructive jaundice and associated symptoms.
  2. Biliary Stenting: In cases where a biliary stricture or blockage is caused by tumors, gallstones, or other factors, interventional radiologists may insert stents or plastic tubes into the bile ducts to keep them open and maintain proper bile flow.
  3. Percutaneous Cholecystostomy: For patients with acute cholecystitis and severe illness, a percutaneous cholecystostomy may be performed. This involves placing a drainage tube into the gallbladder to relieve symptoms and improve the patient’s condition.
  4. Cholangiography: Interventional radiologists use cholangiography, a diagnostic procedure, to visualize the bile ducts and identify the location and extent of obstructions or abnormalities.
  5. Biliary Biopsies: When a definitive diagnosis is needed, interventional radiologists may perform biliary biopsies using image-guided techniques to extract tissue samples for pathology analysis, helping to determine the underlying cause of the biliary obstruction.
  6. Evaluation and Planning: Radiologists use advanced imaging techniques such as ultrasound, CT scans, or MRI to assess the nature and location of the obstruction and help plan the most effective interventional procedures.Wake Radiology’s interventional radiology team’s expertise in managing biliary obstructions is crucial in providing patients with relief from symptoms, improving the flow of bile, and facilitating the treatment of underlying conditions that may be causing the obstructions. Their minimally invasive techniques often lead to quicker recovery times and reduced complications compared to traditional surgical interventions.

    To schedule a consultation for your patient or speak to a member of our interventional scheduling team call, 919-788-1916.

Bleeding

Hemorrhage, or bleeding, can occur at numerous sites in the body, including the gastrointestinal tract, uterus, or solid organs from trauma. Not uncommonly, bleeding can be brisk, and patients may be unstable. Major surgical exploration is risky when a patient is unstable. Many patients with hemorrhage can benefit from an embolization procedure, which works to stop the bleeding by targeting the blood vessels from within. Interventional Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists have many tools at their disposal to treat episodes of hemorrhage, using minimally-invasive techniques under image-guidance.

Compression Fracture

Patients who suffer from osteoporosis are at risk for compression fractures involving spinal vertebrae. Osteoporosis weakens the bone, and, sometimes, very minor forces can cause a part of the vertebrae to collapse. Through modern minimally invasive techniques compression fractures can be treated by the Interventional Radiologists at Wake Radiology.

Two primary minimally invasive techniques for treating spinal compression fractures are:

  1. Vertebroplasty: In this procedure, a special bone cement (usually polymethylmethacrylate) is injected directly into the fractured vertebra through a small incision. The cement hardens quickly, stabilizing the vertebra and providing immediate pain relief. Vertebroplasty is often performed on an outpatient basis, and patients can experience significant pain reduction almost immediately.
  2. Kyphoplasty: Similar to vertebroplasty, kyphoplasty involves the injection of bone cement into the fractured vertebra. However, it includes an additional step of inflating a balloon-like device (a kyphoplasty balloon) within the vertebra before cement injection. This balloon helps to restore some of the vertebra’s height and correct spinal deformity caused by the fracture. Once the vertebra is expanded to the desired height, the cement is injected. Kyphoplasty can provide not only pain relief but also potential restoration of spinal alignment.
    Both vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are performed under local anesthesia and fluoroscopic guidance to ensure precision and safety. These minimally invasive procedures offer several advantages over traditional surgery, including shorter recovery times, reduced risk of complications, and the ability for patients to return to their daily activities more quickly. However, the suitability of these treatments depends on individual patient factors and the specific characteristics of the spinal compression fracture.
    To arrange a consultation and learn more about spinal compression fracture treatment options at Wake Radiology, call the interventional scheduling team at 919-788-1916.

DVT / PE (Deep Vein Thrombosis / Pulmonary Embolus)

Patients with a blood-clotting disorder or prolonged period of immobility are at risk for forming blood clots, usually in the veins of the lower limb. When blood clots break loose and travel through the veins into the heart and lungs, this results in a pulmonary embolus, which can be serious and even life-threatening. Blood thinning agents (anticoagulants) are typically used to treat patients with DVT (deep vein thrombosis), although some people may not be able to tolerate those medications. In some situations, an IVC filter may be placed to protect the lungs from clots breaking loose. Some DVT can severely block flow through veins in the lower legs, in which case more aggressive treatment such as clot removal or clot dissolving medication may be needed.

Genitourinary Interventions

Consultation

At Wake Radiology, our Interventional Radiologists engage in thorough consultations with patients to assess their symptoms, evaluate their medical history, and examine relevant imaging studies before devising the most suitable treatment strategies. Before proceeding with any minimally-invasive procedure, the physician will hold comprehensive discussions with the patient and their family, covering anticipated results, potential risks, and alternative therapeutic approaches. Additionally, the referring physician will receive regular updates regarding the treatment plan.

Nephrostomy Catheter/Tube

A nephrostomy catheter is a small drainage tube placed percutaneously (through the skin) into the kidney in order to allow urine to drain to the outside. This can be needed for several conditions, including blockage of the kidney or ureter by a stone or tumor or build-up of infected fluid in the kidney collecting system. Interventional Radiologists at Wake Radiology place nephrostomy catheters using image guidance such as ultrasound and fluoroscopy. The procedure takes place within the interventional radiology department, where patients receive local anesthesia and intravenous sedation. Once a nephrostomy catheter is in place, urine will drain to the outside of the patient into a drainage bag. Some patients with nephrostomy catheters require long-term urinary drainage and the tubes will require changing every nine to 12 weeks.

Nephroureteral Catheter/Tube

A Nephroureteral catheter is similar to a nephrostomy catheter.  A Nephroureteral catheter is a small drainage tube placed through a tiny incision in the skin directly into the kidney,. The catheter extends from the kidney down through the ureter, and then into the bladder. These tubes can be placed on a temporary basis, such as prior to stone removal by the Urologist. In this situation, they are placed by the Interventional Radiologist just before the patient goes to the operating room for stone removal. Different versions of the tube can be placed for a more permanent need, and these versions have holes allowing urine to drain either down into the bladder or into the drainage bag on the outside of the patient.

Ureteral Stent

The ureter connects the kidney to the bladder. When a patient has a blockage of urine, depending on the situation, a ureteral stent can be placed. If a patient has nephrostomy access into the kidney, this tube can be converted to a ureteral stent by the Interventional Radiologist. Using local anesthetic and minimal IV sedation medication, guidewires and catheters are used to achieve access into the bladder. Once the ureteral stent is working, the patient will no longer require an external tube coming out through the skin.

Varicocele Embolization

Various treatments for varicoceles include both surgical and non-surgical options. Interventional Radiologists at Wake Radiology perform an embolization procedure to block the abnormal blood vessels which are causing the varicocele. This reduces the back pressure upon the scrotal veins, allowing them to heal. This minimally-invasive procedure is performed on an outpatient basis with less risk, less pain, and shorter recovery time compared to traditional surgery.

Prostate Artery Embolization

Prostate artery embolization (PAE) is a minimally invasive procedure gaining prominence in the management of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a common condition in aging men characterized by the enlargement of the prostate gland. During PAE, interventional radiologists navigate a catheter through the arterial system to the small blood vessels that supply the prostate. Once in position, tiny particles are injected into these vessels to obstruct blood flow, thereby reducing the size of the prostate and relieving urinary symptoms associated with BPH.

Reach out to our expert Interventional Services scheduling team to inquire about a consultation: 919-788-1976.

Kidney Cancer

A variety of treatment options are available for patients with kidney tumors, including surgical and non-surgical treatments. Surgical treatments performed by Urologists include operations during which the kidney is removed or a part of the kidney is removed. Interventional Radiologists at Wake Radiology are able to treat smaller kidney tumors using thermal ablation techniques such as cryoablation or radiofrequency ablation. Interventional Radiologists can also perform a kidney embolization prior to surgery in order to decrease blood loss during the operation.

Kidney Failure

Interventional radiology plays a critical role in the management of kidney failure, also known as end-stage renal disease (ESRD). This field of medicine utilizes minimally invasive procedures guided by medical imaging techniques to diagnose and treat various kidney-related conditions.
The Wake Radiology Interventional team can provide valuable support in the management of End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) through the following approaches:

  1. Hemodialysis Access Management: Patients with ESRD often require hemodialysis to remove waste products and excess fluids from their bloodstream. Interventional radiologists create and maintain vascular access points, such as arteriovenous fistulas (AVFs) or grafts, ensuring efficient and safe dialysis treatment.
  2. Catheter Placement: In cases where temporary access is needed for hemodialysis, interventional radiologists can insert and manage central venous catheters, like tunneled catheters or peritoneal dialysis catheters, reducing the risk of complications and optimizing dialysis delivery.
  3. Renal Artery Stenosis: Kidney failure can result from renal artery stenosis, a narrowing of the arteries supplying the kidneys with blood. Interventional radiologists can perform angioplasty and stent placement to improve blood flow to the kidneys and potentially reverse or manage this condition.
  4. Nephrostomy and Ureteral Stenting: In the case of obstructed urinary systems or kidney stones, interventional radiology can provide relief through the placement of nephrostomy tubes or ureteral stents to bypass obstructions and restore proper kidney function.
  5. Renal Biopsies: For diagnosing the cause of kidney dysfunction, interventional radiologists use image-guided techniques to perform percutaneous renal biopsies, helping nephrologists and other specialists determine the appropriate treatment.The Wake Radiology Interventional Radiology Team plays a crucial role in improving the quality of life for individuals with kidney failure by offering minimally invasive solutions for diagnosis, treatment, and management of the condition, while also enhancing the outcomes of renal replacement therapies like dialysis and transplantation.

    To learn more about interventional radiology options for ESRD at Wake Radiology call our scheduling team at: 919-788-1916.

 

 

Kidney Stones

Interventional radiology plays a significant role in the management of kidney stones, particularly in cases where traditional treatment methods may not be effective or are associated with increased risks. Some key roles of interventional radiology in kidney stone management include:

  1. Nephrostomy Tube Placement: In cases of severe kidney stone-related blockage, infection, or severe pain, interventional radiologists may place a nephrostomy tube through the skin into the kidney to bypass the obstruction, allowing urine to drain and relieving pressure on the kidney.
  2. Ureteral Stenting: For patients with kidney stones causing ureteral obstruction or recurrent blockages, interventional radiologists can place ureteral stents, which are flexible tubes that help maintain the flow of urine from the kidney to the bladder. Stents can be a temporary solution to alleviate symptoms and allow time for stone passage or removal.
  3. Image-Guided Stone Localization: Interventional radiology techniques, such as fluoroscopy and ultrasound, are used to precisely locate and identify the size and position of kidney stones, aiding in the planning of effective treatment strategies.
     

     

    Diagnosis and Evaluation: Radiologic imaging, such as CT scans or ultrasound, is used to diagnose the presence and location of kidney stones accurately. It can also help assess the severity and potential complications associated with the stones.

    Wake Radiology Interventional radiologists can offer minimally invasive and highly effective approaches to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of kidney stones, helping patients find relief from the pain and discomfort associated with this common urological condition.

    To learn more about how Wake Radiology Interventional Radiologists manage the discomfort of painful kidney stones, call the scheduling team at, 919-788-1916.

Liver Cancer

The Interventional Radiology Team at Wake Radiology plays a pivotal role in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of liver cancer. 

  1. Liver Cancer Diagnosis: The radiologists at Wake Radiology utilize advanced imaging techniques such as computed tomography (CT) scans, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and ultrasound to accurately diagnose liver cancer, determine its extent, and assess the best course of action for treatment.

  2. Tumor Ablation: Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and microwave ablation are minimally invasive procedures that Wake Radiology interventional radiologists perform to destroy liver tumors. These techniques use heat to target and eliminate cancerous tissue. They are suitable for small tumors or when surgery is not an option.

  3. Transarterial Chemoembolization (TACE): TACE is a procedure in which interventional radiologists deliver chemotherapy drugs directly to the tumor via the hepatic artery, leading to localized treatment while minimizing systemic side effects. Embolization, blocking blood vessels feeding the tumor, is also part of this procedure.

  4. Yttrium-90 Radioembolization: This treatment involves the injection of radioactive microspheres into the liver’s blood vessels, which selectively irradiate liver tumors. It is particularly effective for patients with inoperable liver cancer.

  5. Portal Vein Embolization (PVE): In cases where surgery is required but the liver is insufficiently healthy to withstand the procedure, interventional radiologists can perform PVE. By blocking off a portion of the portal vein that supplies blood to the liver, they can encourage the growth of the healthier portion, making the liver more amenable to surgery.

  6. Liver Biopsies: When a definitive diagnosis is needed, interventional radiologists can perform liver biopsies using image-guided techniques to extract tissue samples for pathology analysis.

  7. Assessment of Treatment Response: Radiologists continue to play a critical role in monitoring the progress of treatment. Imaging, such as CT scans or MRI, can help assess the response to therapies and determine the need for adjustments in the treatment plan.

  8. Vascular Interventions: Interventional radiologists may also address the vascular aspects of liver cancer, including managing complications like portal vein thrombosis and varices that can develop due to liver disease.

    Overall, interventional radiology at Wake Radiology is an integral component of a multidisciplinary approach to liver cancer management, offering minimally invasive, targeted therapies that can improve outcomes, reduce side effects, and extend the quality of life for patients with liver cancer.

    To learn more about interventional procedures and therapies for liver cancer at Wake Radiology, call: 919-788-1916.

Gynecologic Interventional Consultation

At Wake Radiology, our Interventional Radiologists consult with patients to address their gynecologic symptoms and medical history and also examine relevant imaging exams to establish the most suitable treatment strategies. Before embarking on any minimally invasive procedure, our physicians engage in comprehensive discussions with both the patient and their family to outline expected outcomes, potential risks, and alternative therapeutic options. Furthermore, we ensure that the referring doctor remains informed about the treatment plan through regular updates.

 

Nutrition

Wake Radiology’s interventional radiology team primarily focuses on diagnostic and therapeutic procedures related to various medical conditions, including those that may indirectly impact nutritional needs. While their core role is not directly involved in addressing nutritional needs, interventional radiology can play a role in the following contexts:

  1. Enteral Feeding Tube Placement: In cases where patients are unable to consume food or fluids orally due to certain medical conditions, interventional radiologists can assist in the placement of enteral feeding tubes, such as gastrostomy or jejunostomy tubes. These tubes are essential for providing nutrition and hydration directly into the gastrointestinal tract, ensuring that patients receive the necessary nutrients.
  2. Vascular Access for Parenteral Nutrition: For patients who require long-term parenteral nutrition, where nutrients are delivered directly into the bloodstream, interventional radiologists can help establish central venous access through procedures like the placement of a central venous catheter (e.g., a peripherally inserted central catheter). These access points are vital for the administration of parenteral nutrition solutions.
  3. Treatment of Conditions Affecting Nutritional Absorption: In cases where underlying conditions, such as gastrointestinal bleeding, liver disease, or certain vascular disorders, may interfere with the body’s ability to absorb nutrients, interventional radiologists can perform procedures to diagnose and treat these conditions, which can indirectly impact nutritional needs.

    While the primary role of interventional radiology is not directly related to addressing nutritional needs, they are an integral part of the broader healthcare team. Their expertise in minimally invasive procedures can be pivotal in ensuring that patients with complex medical conditions receive the necessary nutritional support when traditional methods are not feasible or effective. This collaborative approach with other healthcare providers ensures comprehensive care for patients with nutritional challenges.

    To learn more or schedule a consult for your patient, call the Wake Radiology interventional scheduling team at, 919-788-1916.

Pain Interventions

Consultation

At Wake Radiology, our Interventional Radiologists will meet with patients to discuss their symptoms and health history, as well as review any pertinent imaging prior to determining the best treatment options. Prior to any minimally-invasive procedure, the physician will discuss expected outcomes, risks, and alternative therapies with the patient and their family. The referring doctor will be updated regarding the treatment plan.

Kyphoplasty / Vertebroplasty

Many patients with osteoporosis who have suffered a vertebral compression fracture maybe candidates for a non-surgical minimally-invasive treatment to stabilize the fracture and alleviate pain. Interventional Radiologists at Wake Radiology will meet with patients who have suffered a vertebral compression fracture. Depending on patient conditions, timing of the fracture, and imaging appearance, the patient may be a candidate for a Kyphoplasty or Vertebroplasty procedure, either on an outpatient or inpatient basis. During the procedure, patients are sedated, and, through small punctures in the sterilized skin, thin metal tubes like large needles are inserted into the bone to the site of the fracture, using fluoroscopic x-ray guidance. With Kyphoplasty, a balloon is inflated to create a cavity in the bone, but with Vertebroplasty, no cavity is created. For both procedures, bone cement is injected into the site of the fracture, thereby stabilizing the bone. Many patients experience pain relief very quickly after the procedure, and outpatients are usually discharged several hours after the procedure.

Sacroplasty

Weakened bones in the back part of the lower pelvis near the tailbone may be prone to fractures, called sacral insufficiency fractures. The bone fragments in these fractures are not separated, but the fractures can cause significant pain. Similar to other minimally-invasive techniques in the spine, Interventional Radiologists can treat these fractures by infusing a bone cement to stabilize the fracture site. Patients are sedated for these procedures, and then using x-ray or CT guidance, thin metal tubes like large needles are inserted into the bone. Bone cement is injected and quickly hardens, stabilizing the fracture and alleviating the pain.

Radiofrequency (RF) Ablation

The majority of patients with cancer that has spread to the bones suffer with some degree of pain. When cancer has spread to the bones, treatment is focused on alleviating patients’ symptoms, rather than trying to cure the cancer. Radiation therapy provided by radiation oncologists is the standard treatment for painful bone tumors. However, sometimes radiation can no longer be given due to certain limitations. Interventional Radiologists can treat painful bone tumors with minimally-invasive image-guided techniques such as radiofrequency (RF) ablation. During RF ablation procedures, patients are sedated, and imaging guidance such a CT scanning is used to allow the Interventional Radiologist to position a probe (or thick needle) into the tumor. Radiofrequency energy is applied, thereby heating the tumor and killing tumor cells. If stabilization of the weakened bone is needed, a bone cement can be injected in conjunction with RF ablation to attempt to minimize the risk of a fracture later. RF ablation procedures are frequently performed on an outpatient basis, during which patients are discharged several hours after the procedure.

Other Services

Image-guided joint injections and other similar therapeutic and diagnostic procedures using fluoroscopic x-ray, ultrasound, and CT Imaging are performed by fellowship-trained board-certified Musculoskeletal Radiologists at Wake Radiology.

Pelvic Congestion Syndrome (PCS)

Pelvic Congestion Syndrome  is a condition that predominantly affects women, causing chronic pelvic pain. It occurs when the veins within the pelvis, particularly the ovarian veins, become dilated and engorged with blood, leading to discomfort and pain. PCS can be a debilitating condition, impacting a person’s quality of life. Interventional radiologists play a crucial role in diagnosing and treating PCS. They employ their expertise in image-guided procedures to precisely locate and address the underlying cause of pelvic pain, which is often the dilated ovarian veins.

The Procedure:

  • Patient Evaluation: The process begins with a thorough evaluation of the patient’s symptoms and medical history. Diagnostic imaging, such as ultrasound or CT scans, may also be used to confirm the diagnosis and pinpoint the problematic veins.
  • Local Anesthesia: Before the procedure, the patient is administered local anesthesia to numb the area, ensuring minimal discomfort during the embolization.
  • Catheter Insertion: A thin catheter is then inserted into a vein, typically through the groin or neck, and carefully guided to reach the affected ovarian veins.
  • Embolization: Small particles or a specialized solution is injected through the catheter directly into the dilated ovarian veins. These particles block the blood flow in the affected veins, causing them to collapse and shrink.
  • Monitoring: Throughout the procedure, real-time imaging, such as fluoroscopy or ultrasound, is used to ensure precise placement of the embolic material.
  • Recovery: After the procedure, patients usually experience minimal discomfort and can often return home the same day or the following day.

Benefits of Ovarian Vein Embolization for Pelvic Congestion Syndrome:

  • Minimally-invasive: Ovarian vein embolization is performed through a tiny incision, reducing the risk of complications and speeding up recovery.
  • High success rate: The procedure has a high success rate in relieving PCS symptoms, including pelvic pain and discomfort.
  • Minimal downtime: Patients typically resume their regular activities within a few days, significantly improving their quality of life.

Call Wake Radiology’s Interventional Scheduling Department at 919-788-1916 to schedule a consultation regarding pelvic congestion syndrome treatment.

Port Catheter

Wake Radiology’s interventional radiology team plays a significant role in the placement of port catheters, also known as implantable venous access devices or portacaths. These devices are used to provide long-term access to a patient’s vascular system, facilitating the administration of medications, chemotherapy, intravenous fluids, and blood draws. Here’s an overview of their role in this context:

  • Assessment and Consultation: Radiologists collaborate with the patient’s healthcare team to determine the need for a port catheter. This involves evaluating the patient’s medical history, treatment plan, and vascular anatomy to ensure that a port catheter is the most suitable option for their needs.
  • Placement Procedure: Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists are highly skilled in performing the minimally invasive procedure to insert the port catheter. The procedure typically involves making a small incision, usually in the upper chest or arm, and tunneling a catheter under the skin to the desired location within a major blood vessel, such as the subclavian or jugular vein. The port itself is then placed just beneath the skin.
  • Fluoroscopy Guidance: During the placement procedure, they use imaging techniques like fluoroscopy to guide the catheter to the correct position. This ensures accurate placement while minimizing the risk of complications.
  • Maintenance and Care: After placement, the radiology team assists with the maintenance of the port catheter, including routine flushing to prevent clot formation, periodic assessment to ensure proper function, and addressing any complications that may arise.
  • Medication and Fluid Administration: The port catheter allows for the easy administration of medications, such as chemotherapy, and intravenous fluids as needed. This offers a convenient and less painful alternative to repeated needle sticks.
  • Blood Draws: The port catheter can also be used for blood draws, reducing the need for repeated venipuncture and making it more comfortable for patients who require frequent blood tests.
  • Removal or Replacement: When the treatment plan is completed or if complications arise, interventional radiologists are responsible for removing or replacing the port catheter.

To learn more about interventional radiology services at Wake Radiology, or to schedule a consultation or appointment for your patient call our scheduling team at: 919-788-1916.

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia

Prostate artery embolization (PAE) is a minimally invasive procedure gaining prominence in the management of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a common condition in aging men characterized by the enlargement of the prostate gland. During PAE, Wake Radiology interventional radiologists navigate a catheter through the arterial system to the small blood vessels that supply the prostate. Once in position, tiny particles are injected into these vessels to obstruct blood flow, thereby reducing the size of the prostate and relieving urinary symptoms associated with BPH. PAE offers a less invasive alternative to traditional surgical methods, like transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP), and is associated with a lower risk of complications and a quicker recovery. This innovative approach has shown promise in improving the quality of life for many men suffering from BPH, offering an effective and safe solution to their bothersome urinary symptoms.

To learn more about Prostate Artery Embolization for BPH, contact the Wake Radiology Interventional Services scheduling team at 919-788-1916.

Tissue Diagnosis

In order to further evaluate an abnormal imaging finding, patients require a sampling of tissue from a specific site in the body. This may be very deep in the body or may be close to the skin (superficial). Regardless of location, Wake Radiology Interventional Physicians use advanced imaging techniques such as CT scanning or ultrasound and a minimally-invasive approach in order to retrieve tissue for analysis in the most pain-free way possible.

Uterine Fibroids

Uterine Artery Embolization / Uterine Fibroid Embolization

Uterine Artery Embolization / Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UAE/UFE) is performed to treat women with symptomatic uterine fibroids. Uterine fibroids are a common health issue among women, often causing discomfort, pain, and other troublesome symptoms. Fortunately, interventional radiologists offer an effective and minimally-invasive solution called uterine fibroid embolization (UFE).

  • Understanding Uterine Fibroids: Uterine fibroids are benign growths that develop within the muscular walls of the uterus. These growths can vary in size and number, and while some women may not experience any symptoms, others may suffer from heavy menstrual bleeding, pelvic pain, and even fertility issues.
  • The Role of Interventional Radiologists: The Interventional radiologists at Wake Radiology specialize in using advanced imaging techniques to guide minimally invasive procedures. UFE is one such procedure that these experts perform to treat uterine fibroids effectively.

If you are experiencing the discomfort of uterine fibroids, consider consulting with a healthcare provider to explore the potential benefits of UFE as a treatment option. Call Wake Radiology’s Interventional scheduling department at 919-788-1916 to schedule a consultation regarding UFE.

LEARN MORE ABOUT UFE 

Varicocele

Wake Radiology’s interventional radiology team plays a significant role in the diagnosis and treatment of varicoceles, which are enlarged veins in the scrotum that can lead to pain, discomfort, and potential fertility issues. Here’s an overview of their role in managing varicoceles:

  • Diagnosis: Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists use imaging techniques such as ultrasound or Doppler ultrasound to diagnose varicoceles. These tests help confirm the presence of dilated veins within the scrotum and assess their severity.
  • Treatment: If a varicocele is symptomatic or if it is impacting fertility, interventional radiologists can perform a minimally invasive procedure known as transcatheter embolization to treat the varicocele. During this procedure, a catheter is inserted into a vein, typically in the groin or neck, and guided to the affected veins in the scrotum. The radiologist then uses embolic materials to block off the varicocele, redirecting blood flow away from the dilated veins and reducing their size.
  • Pain Management: For patients with varicoceles experiencing scrotal pain, embolization can help alleviate the discomfort and improve their quality of life.
  • Fertility Preservation: Varicoceles can lead to reduced fertility in some cases. By treating varicoceles through embolization, interventional radiologists can potentially improve sperm quality and increase the chances of successful conception.
  • Minimally Invasive Approach: Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists specialize in minimally invasive procedures, which typically result in shorter recovery times and less post-procedural discomfort compared to traditional surgical approaches.
  • Follow-Up Care: After the embolization procedure, the interventional radiology team provides post-treatment care and monitoring to ensure the varicocele is effectively managed, symptoms are relieved, and fertility is optimized.
  • Patient Education: Wake Radiology’s interventional radiologists also educate patients about the benefits and potential risks of varicocele embolization, helping them make informed decisions about their treatment options.

    By offering minimally invasive solutions for diagnosing and treating varicoceles, Wake Radiology’s interventional radiology team plays a vital role in addressing this common condition, improving patients’ quality of life, and potentially enhancing their fertility prospects.

To learn more or schedule a consult call our interventional scheduling team at: 919-788-1916.

Interventional

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Our interventional radiologists are board-certified and fellowship-trained, specializing in minimally invasive, image-guided, targeted therapies in order to treat a vast array of medical conditions in virtually every organ system. 

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