Femoral Angiogram Procedure & Its Complications

Doctors who have done specialization in interventional radiology are only allowed to conduct angiography test.

Ways to Prepare for Femoral Angiogram

It is advised to patient that they should avoid waiting or drinking anything a night before the femoral angiogram test. Patients only need to take medication prescribed by the doctor with a glass of normal water. Before going for the femoral angiogram test patient should make necessary arrangement of returning back from the hospital. This is because patient who had undergone the femoral angiogram are not allowed to drink immediately after the test is performed. Right before the test patient is asked to change their cloths and wear hospital gown and intravenous line is then placed in the arm of the patient. This helps in injecting medication in patient’s body. Before starting the femoral angiogram test doctor or radiologist discuss with patient about why and how the test will be conducted, the extent of risk associated with the femoral angiogram test, answer the queries of patient and get the test consent papers signed either by the patient or by their close relative.

Femoral Angiogram Procedure

Femoral Angiogram Procedure

In the femoral angiogram procedure, the doctor first prepares the patient; ask them to lie down on the x-ray table. Head of the patient is placed properly so that it remains stable throughout the test. During the test the heart rate and blood pressure is constantly monitored.

  • A sharp catheter is inserted in the femoral artery of groin; doctors can also select any other artery as per the condition of the patient. Nurses ensure that the groin area of the patient is properly cleaned before the test. As the test requires making incision on the skin of the patient, hence; a local numbing agent is given to the patient.
  • Femoral artery of the patient is accurately located and then a hollow needle is minutely inserted in the femoral artery. Catheter is slowly passed via this hollow needle. Doctor keeps on monitoring the fluoroscope and accordingly manages the catheter. Some patients may feel slight pain while the catheter is inserted while some find it painless.
  • Through the catheter a coloring agent is injected in patient body, this helps in taking x-ray pictures. Patient may feel hot sensation for around 20 seconds. Patient is advised to keep the body straight so that pictures some very clear. The procedure of taking x-ray pictures is a repeated process and it is continued till the pictures come very clear.

Femoral Angiogram Complications

As the pictures are clearly taken, doctors take the catheter out and the puncture site of tightly pressed for some time to stop bleeding. After the femoral angiogram test patient is asked to lie down on their back foe minimum 7 hours. This is recommended because during this time nurses keep a constant eye of the patient to ensure no bleeding or lump formation is found in the groin region.

  • Femoral angiogram test does include some complications. First and the foremost complication is the possibility of artery damage on catheter insertion. The damage can lead to blockage of blood flow leading to stroke.
  • Not all people are comfortable with contrast agents, instead; some patients are highly sensitive to contrast agent. One of the very common side effects of the femoral angiogram test which is experienced by almost all the patients is the metallic taste in mouth and hot sensation in the body because of iodine contrast.
  • Some patients also feel breathing issues and on some patients antihistamines can go wrong with the reaction. Patient who are already suffering from kidney problem or diabetes are more likely to experience kidney failure (this happens very rarely).
  • Pregnant women are not recommended to undergo this femoral angiogram test.

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