These instructions are before and after Cardiac Catheterization and discharge home.
Cardiac Catheterization is a diagnostic procedure for the arteries of the heart (the Coronary). The method involves the introduction of the thin plastic tube (The Catheter) through the artery to the arm or groin and injecting the coronaries with special contrast. Only the "Stick" (injection) for local anesthesia might cause a little pain. However, the passage and injecting of the coronaries are entirely painless.
Before the Catheterization:
You should follow these instructions:
- Please do not eat or drink for at least 6 hours (preferable after midnight) except when taking medication when a small sip of water is allowed.
- Patients with diabetes – Patients taking medicines to control their diabetes should not take them six hours before the procedure. However, they may take medication for other conditions with a small sip of water. We will give diabetes medicines to the patient as soon as the procedure is completed.
- You may shower the night before the procedure or the same morning as the procedure, after shaving all the groin area.
After the Catheterization:
- The medical team is going to move you from the Catheter laboratory to a nearby room. After removing the tube from the groin, the groin will be pressed for 10 minutes to prevent bleeding. The opening in the artery is not usually closed by stitches, but by direct pressure, the bleeding will stop spontaneously.
- You must not sit up, vend or mob either area where the procedure was carried out (e.g., the arm or the leg/ groin area). This is to prevent further loss of blood that may result in a delayed resumption of regular activity).
- The patient will be discharged home 6-8 hours after the procedure unless repaired to stay in hospital for other medical reasons.
After discharge home:
- The patient may don't drive a vehicle for 48 hours.
- The patient must not prostrate on the ground for 48 hours. Sitting is preferred on a chair to avoid affecting the area. Prayers may be said on a chair, however.
- After discharge home, the catheter area does not usually bleed, but the patient should expect some skin bruising at or near the puncture site; following the procedure. This bruising might move to the knee area but would disappear after 2-3 weeks. In case of bleeding after discharge, the patient should lay down in bed or on any solid surface where pressure is applied to the catheter area. If another person is available, he can apply pressure on the procedure site for 15 - 30 minutes to prevent bleeding. In any case, the patient with bleeding from the procedure site must come soon to the emergency department.
- The patient should not feel any pain after discharge home. If feeling a medium or acute pain, the patient should come immediately to the emergency room.
The patient should carry out all the instructions of the physician before and after the procedure and after discharge home.