There are many different heart conditions and problems that are collectively called heart disease. Some conditions you are born with, some you inherit through your parents' genes and others develop over your lifetime. Irregular heart rhythms, blocked or narrowed arteries, heart attacks, and weakening of the heart muscle are just some examples of conditions for which there are a number of specialized treatments and procedures, including the following:
Cardiac catheterization is a procedure we use to diagnose and treat heart conditions. During this procedure, a thin tube is threaded through your blood vessels into the right or left side of your heart. This allows your doctor to do tests or provide you with certain treatments.
Cardiovascular surgery is performed by one of KHSC's cardiac surgeons on the heart or cardiac vessels. The most common type of heart surgery for adults is coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). Doctors also use heart surgery to repair or replace heart valves, which control blood flow through the heart.
Cardioversion is a procedure that may be offered to you when you experience an abnormally fast heartbeat that makes you feel tired and unwell. Conditions such as atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter may be the reason why you have been referred to KHSC to have a cardioversion procedure.
If your doctor has diagnosed you with atrial fibrillation or suspects you have Supraventricular Tachycardia (SVT), they may recommend you undergo a catheter ablation procedure. In certain patients, catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation is an effective treatment.
Catheter ablation for SVTs is often an effective treatment. The procedure involves a diagnostic component and, if appropriate, treatment can be delivered at the same time.
Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators
An Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) is a device that will monitor your heart closely for heart rhythm problems. If a life-threatening rhythm should occur, the ICD will 'shock' the heart with a bolt of energy that will restore your normal rhythm immediately. Your specialist may suggest you receive an ICD if you are at risk for a life-threatening, fast heart rhythm disturbance.
A pacemaker is a small device (about the size of a wristwatch) that is implanted under the skin of your chest. A pacemaker may be used if your doctor has determined your heart may beat too slowly or if it has the potential to slow down occasionally.
Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI)
Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI) is a minimally invasive procedure that is done to repair a valve in your heart. Normally your valve would be repaired during open heart surgery, however, surgery may be too risky for some people who are either too ill or have other medical conditions. The TAVI procedure allows an aortic valve to be implanted using a long narrow tube called a catheter.