The clinic-based Interventional Radiology Program at Silver Cross Hospital uses minimally invasive techniques to treat a wide spectrum of diseases and conditions, including cancer, artery disease, high blood pressure, uterine fibroids, osteoporosis and more.
Through a tiny incision in the skin, highly trained interventional radiologists can deliver precise, targeted treatments to complex and sometimes life-threatening diseases and conditions. And because they’re less invasive, these procedures involve less risk, less pain and less recovery time compared to open surgery.
Interventional radiology treatments are a well-accepted choice for many conditions and are especially appropriate for patients who are in frail health or who have already undergone numerous surgeries.
Who are Interventional Radiologists?
Interventional radiologists are board-certified doctors who specialize in minimally invasive, targeted treatments. They offer expertise and in-depth knowledge of the least invasive treatments available, and diagnostic and clinical experience across all specialties. These experts work closely with other doctors and play an important role on the treatment team. They provide both inpatient and outpatient services.
Interventional radiologists use X-rays, MRI and other imaging techniques to advance a catheter in the body, usually in an artery, to treat at the source of a condition non-surgically. As the inventors of angioplasty and the catheter-delivered stent, which were first used in the legs to treat peripheral arterial disease, interventional radiologists are considered the pioneers of minimally invasive modern medicine.
Interventional radiologists are devoted to advancing patient care through clinical and image based diagnosis and minimally invasive procedures to treat:
- Cancer: Cancer can be treated with several treatment methods, including selective internal radiation therapy, chemoembolization and radiofrequency ablation. SIRT uses tiny radioactive beads to destroy liver tumors. Chemoembolization delivers a high dose of chemotherapy directly to a tumor, blocking its blood supply. Radiofrequency ablation uses heat to destroy cancerous tumors.
- Blocked peripheral arteries: Hardening of the arteries in the legs or peripheral arterial disease, which blocks circulation, can be treated with balloon angioplasty to open the pathway for blood.
- Varicose veins: Heating and sealing the great saphenous vein in the leg is used to treat painful varicose veins. This procedure improves circulation and shrinks bulging veins using a technique called vein ablation.
- Blood clot in leg: A blood clot in your leg, known as deep vein thrombosis, can be removed by placing clot-busting drugs on the clot to prevent vein damage.
- Uterine fibroids: Uterine fibroid embolization delivers tiny beads to the artery feeding the tumor, which then blocks the blood supply causing the uterine fibroid to shrink.
- Spinal fractures: Patients with osteoporosis and spinal fractures can have bone cement injected into their vertebra to reduce pain and reinforce the spine through kyphoplasty, vertebroplasty and a newer procedure called SpineJack.
- Infertility: Interventional radiology can offer non-surgical infertility treatments for both men and women. Varicose veins in the scrotum that can cause infertility can be closed using embolization. Blocked fallopian tubes can be opened with a catheter using selective salpingography.