Coronary angioplasty, also known as percutaneous coronary intervention, is a procedure used to open clogged heart arteries. The procedure involves temporarily inserting and inflating a tiny balloon where the artery is clogged to help widen the artery.
Angioplasty is often combined with the permanent placement of a small wire mesh tube called a stent to help prop the artery open and decrease its chance of narrowing again.
Angioplasty can improve symptoms of blocked arteries. These symptoms can be chest pain and shortness of breath. Angioplasty can also be used during a heart attack to quickly open a blocked artery in order to reduce the amount of damage to the heart.
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