Community Memorial Health System, Where Excellence Begins With Caring
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Heart & Vascular Program, the regional leader in cardiac care
Cardiac Catheterization Lab

Cardiac Catheterization
Lab Locations:

Community Memorial Hospital
805/652-5011

Cardiac Catheterization Lab

We offer an advanced cardiovascular catheterization (cath) laboratory for diagnosis and treatment of cardiac and vascular diseases.

Currently, the lab performs a comprehensive cardiac vascular assessment for its patients. During cardiac catheterization, cardiologists insert a thin, plastic tube, called a catheter, into an artery or vein in either the arm or the leg. They then lace the catheter through a series of connecting blood vessels into the coronary arteries of the heart. Using special digital X-ray equipment, the cardiologist is able to watch the movement of the catheter inside the body to assess the heart's pumping ability and determine whether non-surgical medical management or bypass surgery may be most appropriate for the patient.

The cardiologist can also assess the condition of the patient's vascular system—the veins and arteries that comprise the circulatory system—through catheterization. As the cardiologist laces the catheter through the veins and arteries, he can see whether any structure or narrowing exists. Many patients with narrowed or clogged arteries may be treated using procedures, which can be performed in the cath lab: angioplasty or stent placements, both of which expand the artery to improve blood flow to the heart. Left untreated, narrowed or clogged arteries can lead to heart disease and stroke.

The American Heart Association and other clinical research studies have identified several factors that increase the risk of coronary heart disease and heart attack. They include smoking, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, inactivity, obesity, stress and some medical conditions such as diabetes. If you think you are at risk, check with your primary care physician to see if you might need a cardiac or vascular assessment.