Interventional radiology, commonly known as IR, is the practice of using medical imaging to direct minimally invasive surgical operations for the diagnosis, management, and treatment of a variety of illnesses. Fluoroscopy, MRI, CT, and ultrasound are a few of the imaging techniques used. These radiologists are employed with the vascular and interventional radiology division of UVA Health System.
Interventional radiologists utilize needles and catheters to treat diseases inside of your body through tiny incisions, typically in your belly. They employ medical imaging to direct their catheters through your arteries, blood vessels, and organs. Cool, huh?
During an ordinary IR surgery, the patient would be lying on an operating table with a specialized X-ray camera—a fluoroscope—over them. The radiologist would be dressed in the appropriate safety gear, including a blue robe and a mask. While watching the projected medical images on the screen, they would be guiding needles and other instruments that resembled wires through the patient’s body. It’s incredible how they can use medical pictures to find their equipment precisely and determine
Why Interventional Radiology?
Patients who might normally require open surgery can avoid costly, painful, and risky procedures by using interventional radiology. As a result, IR has replaced other treatment options for many different illnesses. The range of therapies that IR can successfully deliver is always evolving and growing.
Cancer and other conditions can be identified and treated using interventional radiology (IR) without the need for extensive surgery.
With IR, your doctor uses imaging tests like ultrasounds, CT scans, or MRIs to look inside your body. Then, they perform an operation or administer treatment where it is needed by using tiny equipment like tubes and needles.
Through microscopic wounds that may be as small as a pinhole, your doctor can insert tools into your body during these procedures.
Interventional Radiology for Cancer
Numerous ways that interventional radiology aids in the treatment of cancer. It can reduce pain and the negative effects of cancer treatment, stop bleeding during surgery, and directly treat the disease.
Using interventional radiology, your doctor can administer cancer-curing treatments like chemotherapy and radioactive drugs directly to tumours and cancer cells.
In addition, doctors can destroy tumours or cancerous cells by heating them with radio waves, electric currents, or ice crystals. In addition to treating the tumour, a second method of harming tumours and cancer cells is to cut off the blood supply to the area.
Blood clots and fluid retention in the body are among the side effects of cancer treatment that interventional radiologists can manage.