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Cardiac Catheterization (Adult and Paediatric)

Cardiac catheterization, also known as cardiac cath, is an invasive imaging technique that lets your doctor assess how well your heart is functioning.

It is occasionally paired with other procedures to diagnose and treat heart issues. For instance, a doctor could replace a damaged heart valve or correct a congenital defect in your heart without performing traditional surgery or making a significant incision. Usually, your doctor will suggest cardiac catheterization in the following conditions:

  • To find out the cause of your chest pain or abnormal heart rhythm
  • To evaluate heart functions
  • To check your oxygen levels and blood flow to your heart
  • To diagnose heart anomalies like cardiomyopathy or pulmonary hypertension
  • To confirm or evaluate the severity of coronary artery disease and pulmonary artery diseases
  • To evaluate aortic diseases like aortic stenosis
  • To test for heart valve diseases like mitral regurgitation
  • To take a tiny part of heart muscle for biopsy
  • As a part of treatment shortly after a heart attack
  • To determine the need for other interventional treatments, like bypass graft, CABG, or heart surgery
  • To assist during angiography to open a blockage and place a stent
  • To assist while planning for a heart transplant.

Aster Hospitals provides top-notch facilities for invasive cardiac procedures and diagnostics. The cardiology department uses modern and cutting-edge technology to provide heart disease management and diagnostic services. Aster Hospitals have bagged accreditation from both national and international organizations for the best medical care. The National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare (NABH) has accredited Aster Hospitals. Additionally, NABL supports Aster's innovative laboratory services. At Aster Hospitals, the cardiology department performs heart catheterization procedures for pediatric patients and adults with congenital heart disease.


At Aster Hospitals we provide the highest quality of care and a transformative experience for all your healthcare needs. With our network of multi-speciality hospitals, specialised doctors, and world-class technology, we bring global standards of medical care to our patients.

How long does it take for cardiac catheterization?

Cardiac catheterization operation usually takes between 30 and 60 minutes. However, the preparation and recovery times increase the total duration by 5–9 hours.

How many days are needed to recover after cardiac catheterization?

When you can resume working will be decided by your heart specialist. Usually, 2 days after leaving the hospital, you can drive. However, you must refrain from vigorous activity for 2–5 days, depending on where the catheter was inserted.

Is cardiac catheterization a risky procedure?

No. The chances of risk after cardiac catheterization are very low. And chances of severe complications are less than 1%.

What should I follow during the recovery period of cardiac catheterization?


After cardiac catheterization, follow the instructions given by your cardiologist. These might include:

  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Following the dietary restrictions suggested by your surgeon
  • Taking prescribed medications
  • Caring for your wound site as per the doctor's advice

Can I walk after cardiac catheterization?

Yes, you can walk after cardiac catheterization. If the catheter is inserted via the arm, recovery will be faster. However, you can walk on flat surfaces only for a short distance.

Will I be given anesthesia before this procedure?

Yes. You will be given a mild sedative to help you rest, but you will remain conscious throughout the procedure. Also, your surgeon will give local anesthesia to numb the catheter insertion location.

When will I get the cardiac catheterization results?

Usually, your doctor can share the findings of diagnostic cardiac catheterization right after the test. However, biopsy or other lab results may need some time.

What are the possible complications after cardiac catheterization?

The chances of complications are less. However, potential risks include:

  • Infection
  • Irregular heart rhythm
  • Low blood pressure
  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Allergic reaction
  • Kidney failure
  • Blood clots
  • Damage to blood vessels requiring emergency heart surgery

Does cardiac catheterization hurt?


No, you don't feel pain during this procedure. However, you may feel:

  • Nausea
  • Chest discomfort
  • Itching
  • Allergy symptoms

What are the restrictions to follow after cardiac cath?

Avoid the following activities after a heart cath:

  • Pushing
  • Pulling
  • Lifting anything over 4.5 kg
  • Strenuous exercise
  • Running
  • Cycling
  • Swimming

Advanced Technology & Facilities

Cardiac Catheterization (Adult and Paediatric)

The expert surgeons at Aster Hospitals have extensive experience diagnosing and treating congenital heart defects. The cardiology department at Aster Hospitals has performed several cardiac catheterizations in their nationwide centers. Aster Hospitals perform hundreds of cardiac catheterizations and complex interventional cardiac caths for infants, teens, and adults each year. Compared to other hospitals, we have more experience managing several cardiac problems. Aster Hospitals is among the best because of our success rate in heart procedures, including cardiac catheterization.

Diagnostic catheterization

As the name suggests, this kind of catheterization is done for diagnosis. Heart specialists use this to examine your heart, blood vessels, and valves. This helps your cardiologists check blood flow through your heart, which gives a better understanding of how your heart works.

There are three steps involved in diagnostic heart catheterization:

  • First, your blood pressure is recorded in different chambers of your heart and blood vessels.
  • Then blood oxygen levels are evaluated in each chamber of your heart.
  • Last, an imaging test using X-rays, known as an angiogram, is performed.

Interventional catheterization

Your surgeon uses interventional cardiac caths to fix cardiac anomalies or heart defects. Generally, interventional cardiologists will first go for diagnostic catheterization listed above and then perform interventional procedures. The different types of interventional procedures available include:

Balloon valvuloplasty

This is an invasive procedure done to fix certain heart valve conditions. In a valvuloplasty, an expert surgeon will insert a catheter with a deflated balloon on its tip into the blood vessel. Once placed in its position, this balloon is inflated, widening the restricted narrow valve. Doctors perform this procedure to treat conditions like aortic stenosis or pulmonary stenosis.

Stent placement

This is another medical procedure that helps restore proper blood flow or fluid passage. During stenting, the heart surgeon inserts a small, flexible mesh tube called a stent into a narrowed or blocked blood vessel. Later, the stent is placed in the position. Stents are often used in treating diseases of coronary arteries, like atherosclerosis. It helps in keeping your artery open and improves blood circulation.

Arrhythmia ablation

Your surgeon performs this invasive procedure to fix arrhythmias or abnormal heart rhythms. During the surgery, a cardiac specialist will insert a catheter into the heart via a blood vessel in your groin or wrist. Then this catheter is guided to the area of your heart with arrhythmia. Once it reaches the target tissue causing irregular rhythm, it is destroyed. Heat (radiofrequency ablation) or extreme cold (cryoablation) techniques are used for destruction. This helps restore normal heart rhythm and improves symptoms like dizziness, palpitations, or shortness of breath.

Septal closures

Also known as atrial or ventricular septal defect closure, this procedure treats septal defects that separate heart chambers. Septal defects are holes that can be present between the atriums (upper chambers) or ventricles (lower chambers) of the heart. This procedure is a minimally invasive alternative to open-heart surgery for repairing septal defects.

For the septal closure procedure, your surgeon uses a unique device known as a septal occluder. This is inserted in the heart with the help of a catheter. The device is guided to the place with the septal defect and then deployed to seal the hole.

Heart valve placement

Heart valve placement is an invasive surgical procedure. Your heart surgeon will perform this to replace a damaged or diseased heart with a mechanical or biological valve. As a result, it improves blood flow and overall heart function.


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