Angioplasty Treatment in South Africa

About Angioplasty

Angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure used to correct the blood flow through the artery, The blood flow may be restricted due to an obstruction or most commonly because of arterial atherosclerosis, that is, the thickening of the arterial wall because of deposits.

Angioplasty is sometimes also known as percutaneous transluminal angioplasty or balloon angioplasty. During the procedure, a thin tube or catheter is passed through the blood vessel in the groin or arm area to reach the site of narrowing or blockage. A stent or a balloon is attached to the tip of the catheter. After placing the stent or inflating the balloon, the interventional cardiologist withdraws the catheter.

When is Angioplasty required?

There are different types of angioplasty procedures and each type has a clear indication on when it should be performed. Angioplasty cost also varies as per the type of procedure performed. 

The common types of angioplasty and their indications are as follows:

Coronary Angioplasty: It is used in the case of stenosis of narrowing of the coronary artery in the heart due to plaque build-up, leading to unstable angina causing symptoms such as chest pain and functional limitations.

Peripheral Angioplasty: It is used to open the narrowing of other arteries other than the coronary arteries. Examples may include arteries in the abdomen, leg, and kidney.

Carotid Angioplasty: It is used to treat carotid artery stenosis, the main artery in the neck that supplies blood to the brain and face.

Factors Affecting the Cost of Angioplasty

The following factors affect angioplasty cost:

  • Location of stenosis
  • Reason for stenosis
  • Number of blockages
  • Number of balloons of stent used to clear blockages
  • Experience of the specialist
  • Cath lab charges
  • Hospital charges
  • Doctor’s fee
  • Duration of hospital stay
  • Any unforeseen complications
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About the Angioplasty

Coronary artery disease (CAD) is one of the most common heart diseases reported across the world. It results due to blood clot formation and plaque accumulation in the major blood vessels of the heart.

Balloon angioplasty is the most common endovascular procedure (procedure performed inside the blood vessel) carried out to treat coronary artery disease. In this procedure, the blood clots in the major arteries of the heart are detected and cleared by inserting a catheter into an artery of the hand (radial artery) or leg (femoral artery). This catheter consists of a balloon at its tip, which dislodges the clot to the periphery of the blood vessel after inflation.

Angioplasty may or may not be followed by coronary stent placement, depending on the angiography findings. This procedure is performed in patients with fewer blood clots in the vessels and those who do not respond to medications. It may also be carried out as an emergency procedure to treat a heart attack.

Signs and symptoms of plaque deposits in the heart

  • Fatigue and dizziness due to insufficient blood supply to the tissues and overall decreased efficacy of the heart
  • Shortness of breath to compensate for inadequate pumping of the blood
  • Compromised blood flow to the heart resulting in heart attack, characterized by pain in the chest, lower jaw, and left arm

How is Angioplasty performed?

A heart bypass surgery is different from coronary stent placement or a simple balloon angioplasty. The latter is performed in the cardiac catheterization lab at the hospital.

The following steps are involved in a typical balloon angioplasty procedure:

Step 1: Placing the patient on oral sedatives

Step 2: Administration of general anaesthesia

Step 3: Incision at the femoral artery or radial artery

Step 4: Insertion of catheter into the artery through incision

Step 5: Guiding the catheter up to the base of coronary artery

Step 6: Insertion of a guidewire from within the catheter into the artery up to the site of blood clot

Step 7: Insertion of contrast dye through the catheter

Step 8: Checking for the blocks through radiograph

Step 9: Identifying the pinpoint location of the blood clot

Step 10: Passage of guide wire through catheter just beyond the region of clot

Step 11: Inflating and deflating the balloon till normal blood flow is obtained from the vessel

Step 12: Stabilizing the stent in place

Step 13: Retrieving the catheter

Recovery from Angioplasty

  • You should drink plenty of fluids after the procedure. This will help the contrast dye injected into your body to dissociate easily.
  • Avoid smoking for at least one to two days after the procedure to accelerate your body’s healing ability and reduce heart stent recovery time.
  • Till two days after the procedure, avoid walking or standing for a long time
  • If you have a stent placed, avoid vigorous exercises for up to 30 days after the procedure. Doing so will interfere with heart stent recovery time.

Contraindications: You may not be suggested to undergo balloon angioplasty if the access vessel (femoral or radial artery) is of insufficient size and quality.

Recovery time: You will be discharged from the hospital in one day. But you should avoid strenuous activities for one month after being discharged from the hospital. 

Prognosis: According to research, 79 percent of the people who receive the stent after a balloon angioplasty are relieved from angina for up to 5 years.

Benefits:

  • Simple procedure with faster recovery
  • Fewer chances of stroke during the procedure
  • Fewer chances of infection
  • Short time of hospitalization
  • Lower blood loss

Patient Stories

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the health care infrastructure of South Africa / Why should opt for South Africa as a destination for your medical treatment?
Like most countries, hospitals in South Africa are based upon public and private healthcare systems. There are three main levels of healthcare based upon the payment method of the patient.
  • The full paying patients are those who usually prefer to be treated by a doctor working in the private sector. They can also be funded by an external source. Many non-South African citizens also prefer this treatment service.
  • Fully subsidized patients are those who have been referred from a Primary Healthcare Service Hospital.
  • Partially subsidized patients are patients whose costs are subsidized based on the amount of their income.
The public healthcare system has three main centers for health under its wing:
  • Clinics - These are run by trained professionals and nurses. They can serve as the first point of contact for a patient.
  • Community Healthcare Centre - This is a bigger setup, complete with full-fledged services and doctors and nurses.
  • Hospital - A patient usually gets here after a referral from a clinic or community health center. One can also go in for emergencies. A hospital provides various services like performing surgery and treating chronic illnesses.
Hospitals in South Africa are gearing up to tackle major illnesses and to provide better treatment options. The South African government is also working to introduce policies and towards accommodating more patients from all across the world. It is a great country to find affordable treatment options.
What are the conditions of the hospitals in South Africa? Are they JCI certified? What is the quality of the support staff in the hospitals
The Joint Commission International (JCI) accredits and certifies most health care organizations and programs all around the world. Joint Commission International Accreditation and Certification is recognized as the global leader for health care quality of care and patient safety.
Are the doctors/surgeons in South Africa of the best quality?
Doctors associated with Medigence are of the best quality. We hope to give our patients a pleasant experience and the best doctors we can find. Since South Africa has a lot of requirements in the field of healthcare, the country attracts doctors from all over the world to contribute their services. This can help to ensure that even you receive the best quality of doctors.
What is the process for obtaining a medical visa in South Africa?
One can apply for a visa to South Africa for a period of 90 days. The High Commission of India can then help one decide for how long a visa can be extended. This usually differs from person to person. The Medical Visa allows a person to stay for a maximum of six months with a valid visa. After this, one can go to the FRO office ( Foreigner’s Registration Office ) or FRRO (Foreigner's Regional Registration Office) and request for an extension. Do note that the validity of a visa begins on the day it is issued by the High Commission of India and not on the date of departure. Applications for visas will not be accepted more than 30 days prior to departure.
What support services does MediGence provide in the United Arab Emirates?
MediGence enables you to plan and manage your medical decisions better. These are some of our services offered:
  • Expert Opinion
    We help you seek an Expert Opinion on your diagnosis and treatment from an experienced team of doctors at MediGence and specialists from a reputable hospital.
  • Hospital Recommendation
    We recommend a hospital or a healthcare institution that is best suited for you, based on your ailment and its criticality.
  • 360-degree Hospital Review
    We give you a transparent and holistic view of the hospital and its infrastructure, accreditation, facilities, and expertise to give you confidence.
  • Doctor Validation and Communication
    We share a comprehensive profile of the treating doctor and also arrange a call to clear queries regarding treatment if needed.
  • Options to Choose From
    Based on your choice of destination and other preferences, we provide you multiple options with respect to hospitals and doctors to choose from.
  • 24X7 Patient Care Support
    A dedicated patient case manager stays in constant touch with you to help you at every step of the decision-making process and resolve queries that you may have.
  • Transparent Treatment Cost and Other Expenses
    We give a clear and accurate indication of the total cost of treatment including treatment, stay, meals, and other expenses.
  • Visa Assistance
    We provide and help prepare documentation for visa approval and coordinate with the embassy to expedite the visa process.
  • Accommodation Arrangements
    We propose to you a choice of accommodation based on your preference such as long stay, short stay, or luxury properties.
Which are the best cities in South Africa for medical treatment?
While many cities are striving to create some of the best hospitals in South Africa, Durban, Lenasia, and Cape Town already have some very good hospitals for treatment in South Africa. Located in Durban, Ethekwini Hospital and Heart Centre is a reasonable and affordable hospital in South Africa. Life Kingsbury Hospital in Capetown provides a holistic healing environment for patients. One can also opt for the Ahmed Kathrada Private Hospital in Lenasia. This hospital has been running for nearly 30 years now and various medical facilities can be availed from here.

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