St. Luke's University Health Network

Vascular Surgery

Vascular and Interventional Procedures at St. Luke's

Carotid Stenting for Carotid Diseases – The carotid arteries carry blood to the brain. These arteries can develop plaque build-up, which, in turn, can narrow the carotid artery or break away and be carried to the brain. This may cause a stroke. During carotid stenting, a doctor opens the blockage with a small balloon and places a small cylinder known as a stent in the artery to keep it open.

Laser Ablation of Veins – A doctor uses laser energy inside an abnormal vein to heat the vessel wall and seal it closed.

Stent Graft Repair of Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms – The thoracic aorta is the part of the aorta that runs through the chest. A thoracic aortic aneurysm (TAA) occurs when a weak area of a thoracic aorta bulges. Stent graft repair takes the pressure off of the aorta's walls and allows blood to flow freely, preventing the aneurysm from rupturing.

Endovascular Treatment of PVD with Angioplasty, Stenting, Atherectomy, Cryoplasty and Endografting – Peripheral vein disease (PVD) is a narrowing of vessels that carry blood to the legs, arms, stomach or kidneys. These blockages restrict blood circulation. They can be treated by the following methods:

  • Angioplasty calls for a doctor to insert a catheter into the narrowed portion of an artery. A balloon on the tip of the catheter is inflated, compacting the plaque and widening the vein.
  • With stenting, a doctor places a cylindrical, wire mesh tube in the narrowed artery with a catheter. There the stent expands and locks open. It stays in that spot, keeping the diseased artery open.
  • A doctor performing atherectomy uses a laser catheter to remove plaque from arteries.
  • During crypolasty, a doctor inserts a catheter into the clogged area of the artery. A balloon is inflated with liquid nitrous oxide, causing its temperature to drop. This freezes the plaque and causes it to “die.”

Sclerotherapy for Treatment of Venous Disease – During sclerotherapy, a doctor injects a solution into a varicose or spider vein. This causes the vein's lining to swell shut and the blood in the vein to clot. The vessel eventually turns into scar tissue.

Treatment for Claudication – Claudication is the recurrent cramping in the legs that is brought on by exercise. Poor blood circulation in the legs results in symptoms that include pain, tension and weakness after walking has begun, and the disappearance of the discomfort after a period of rest. To relieve claudication, a balloon is used to open narrowed or blocked blood vessels in the affected area.

Endovascular Aneurysm Repair – A procedure to treat abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). An aortic aneurysm is a weak spot in the main blood vessel from the heart to the rest of the body. As blood flows through the aorta, the weak area bulges and can burst. Endovascular aneurysm repair involves placing a stent graft (fabric tube) inside the affected area of the blood vessel. The graft creates a sleeve through which the blood can flow.