A heart cath procedure is described as a surgical procedure that is performed under a local anesthetic; and it involves the insertion of a catheter into a valve or vessel of the heart. There are many applications of the heart cath method. When the heart cath is performed in order to insert the catheter into the artery it will be known as coronary catherization.
In case the catheter is inserted into the cardiac valves, it will be referred to as catherization of valves. A heart cath is used for investigative purposes, like when there is a need to measure the intercardiac and intravascular blood pressures. A catheter may be inserted for retrieving tissue for the purpose of conducting biopsy. Blood flow in the heart can be tested with the injection of various agents into the heart.
A heart cath is also used in order to detect the presence of an intracardiac shunt. It is also used in various studies where contrast agents are injected into the various vessels and valves in order to observe the shape of the blood vessels and how the rhythmic motion of the valves.
The catheter will be inserted before performing major heart surgery and the tube may be inserted through the femoral artery in the growing or through the wrist.