Interventional radiology (IR) is a medical
specialty that performs minimally invasive
treatments using radiologic imaging for procedure guidance.
Interventional Radiology treatments have become the primary method of care for a variety of conditions, offering less risk, less pain and less recovery time, compared to open surgery.
Interventional radiologists are board-certified, fellowship trained physicians who specialize in minimally invasive, targeted treatments. Interventional radiologists must graduate from an accredited medical school, pass a licensing examination, and complete at least five years of graduate medical education (residency). In addition, interventional radiologists have several different paths to board certification.
This specialized training is certified by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) and takes place in accredited training programs. Interventional radiologists are certified by the American Board of Radiology (ABR) in both Diagnostic Radiology and Vascular and Interventional Radiology. Interventional radiologists have had extensive training and must show expertise in radiation safety, radiation physics, the biological effects of radiation and injury prevention. They must offer the most comprehensive knowledge of the least invasive treatments available coupled with diagnostic and clinical experience.
Sometimes the flow of urine is blocked due to stones, infection, congenital abnormalities or trauma. To restore the flow, a nephrostomy tube (small catheter) can be placed through the skin of the lower back into the kidney. As a result, urine will then drain into a small bag connected to the tube. A nephrostomy tube may be in place for days, weeks or months.
Image Guided Biopsy
A biopsy is a minimally invasive method of sampling tissue to determine if it is benign, malignant, or infectious. An image-guided biopsy uses imaging technology that enables us to safely insert needles into hard-to-reach places in the body, such as the lungs, kidneys, liver, lymph nodes, and the bones.
Kidney Tumor or Angiomyolipoma (AML) Embolization
Embolization is a minimally invasive treatment, which is usually used to treat benign (non-cancerous) masses in the kidney.
During an embolization procedure, small particles are injected through a catheter into a mass. These particles block blood flow to the mass, taking away its supply of oxygen and nutrients. This causes the mass to die and shrink.
Uses imaging guidance to insert a catheter (thin tube) into a blocked or narrowed artery. The catheter has a tiny balloon on its tip that is inflated to push plaque against the artery's walls to widen the path for blood flow.
Uses imaging guidance to direct a balloon catheter, and then a stent, to the site of the blockage. The balloon is inflated to open the blockage, and then deflated and taken out, leaving the stent in place to keep the artery open.
Uses imaging guidance and a catheter specially designed to remove plaque and collect it in a chamber in the tip. This allows removal of the plaque as the device is removed from the artery. Atherectomy may be used alone or in combination with balloon angioplasty to facilitate the placement of stents.