Interventional Neuroradiology

What To Expect

Stanford Interventional NeuroradiologyThis is a broad explanation of what you can expect when you come to the hospital for an interventional neuroradiology procedure. This is in no way meant to be an exact, or detailed explanation, but instead to provide a general overview.

All of the interventional neuroradiology procedures are performed in the cath/angio suite. This means that they are done in special rooms that have x-ray equipment specifically designed for doing procedures in the head, neck and spine. All procedures are done in a sterile fashion.

Unless there is an acute event or you have a pre-existing medical problem that would warrant hospitalization prior to the procedure, most patients come to the hospital the morning of the procedure and are admitted after the procedure is complete. In advance of this, you are seen in clinic, where a history is taken, your case is reviewed and you are examined. You have an opportunity to learn about the risks, benefits and alternatives of the procedure that they are to undergo.When you first get to the hospital, there is a special floor where the nursing staff will get you ready (blood drawn, IV placed, changed into hospital garb, a bladder catheter inserted, groin area shaved and a chart assembled). The physicians also come to assess your current condition and to answer any further questions. For most procedures we also do brain wave monitoring, so the technologist from neurology comes to attach leads to assist with monitoring.Once these preparatory steps have been completed, you are taken to the cath/angio suite. You will meet the nurse and the technologist who will be working in the room and available to help you. Once inside the angio room, you will be placed on the special table (which can be moved for optimal positioning), heart, blood pressure and oxygen saturation monitors will be placed, and sterile drapes will be placed over you from head to foot.

Most of these procedures are done with you awake, but sedated with intravenous medication. Some procedures such as aneurysm coiling are done under general anesthesia. Most of the patients with vascular problems are admitted to the intensive care unit for monitoring over night after the procedure and have a total length of stay of two days. Some procedures such as the treatment of spinal compression fractures require a shorter stay and patients may leave in a matter of hours.

On discharge you are given disease/ procedure specific instructions. All patients have contact numbers that they are encouraged to use if they have questions or concerns.

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