Intra vascular coiling

Intra vascular coiling, also called endovascular embolization, is used by healthcare providers to block blood flow into an aneurysm.

January 7, 2023

Intra vascular coiling, also called endovascular embolization, is used by healthcare providers to block blood flow into an aneurysm.

Some facts about Intra vascular coiling:

  • An aneurysm is a area in the wall of an artery that is generally weakened.
  • It can cause life-threatening bleeding and brain damage if an aneurysm ruptures.
  • Blood flow into an aneurysm can be prevented that helps to keep it from rupturing.
  • A catheter, which a long, thin tube is inserted into a groin artery for endovascular coiling.
  • The catheter will be advanced into the affected brain artery where the coil is deployed. 
  • X-rays will be used to help guide the catheter into the artery.
  • The coils are very small and thin and are made of soft platinum metal, and are shaped like a spring.
  • Coiling is also used to treat a condition called arteriovenous malformation, or AVM which is an abnormal connection between an artery and a vein. 

Preparation for Intra vascular coiling:

  • Your healthcare provider should be informed if you have ever had a reaction to any contrast dye, or if you are allergic to iodine.
  • Your healthcare provider should also be informed if you are sensitive to or are allergic to any medicines, latex, tape, or anesthetic agents (local and general).
  • You need to fast for a few hours or overnight depending on the condition.
  • Inform your healthcare provider of all medicines including prescribed and over-the-counter and herbal supplements that you are taking.
  • Your healthcare provider should be informed about any history of bleeding disorders or if you are taking any anticoagulant (blood-thinning) medicines, aspirin, or other medicines that affect blood clotting as it may be necessary for you to stop these medicines before the procedure.
  • A blood test may be performed before the procedure to determine how long it takes your blood to clot.

Procedure for Intra vascular coiling:

  • Empty your bladder prior to the start of the procedure.
  • You will be positioned on your back on the X-ray table and an intravenous (IV) line will be started in your hand or arm.
  • An electrocardiogram (ECG) monitor will be connected with you that records the electrical activity of the heart.
  • All of your vital signs such as heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing rate and neurological signs will be monitored during the procedure.
  • A catheter will be inserted into your bladder to drain urine.
  • Your pulses below the groin site where the catheter will be inserted will be checked and marked with a marker to check the circulation to the limb below the site after the procedure.
  • The skin over the injection site will be cleansed and a local anesthetic will be injected.
  • A small cut will be made in the skin to expose the artery in the groin and a catheter will be inserted into the artery in your groin using a guide wire.
  • Fluoroscopy is used to guide the catheter through the blood vessel into the brain.
  • Contrast dye will be injected to make the aneurysm and surrounding blood vessels visible on X-ray once the catheter has been guided to the affected artery in the brain.
  • The aneurysm will be measured and its shape as well as other characteristics will be recorded.
  • A smaller catheter will be then inserted into the initial catheter.
  • The healthcare provider will manipulate the coil into the aneurysm once the catheter has reached the aneurysm.
  • The coil is separated from the catheter when the coil has been completely inserted into the aneurysm.
  • As many coils as needed will be inserted to completely seal off the aneurysm which will form a mesh-like structure inside the aneurysm.
  • Additional X-ray images will be taken to make sure the aneurysm has been sealed off after the aneurysm has been 'packed' with coils.
  • The coil will be left in place permanently in the aneurysm.
  • The catheter will be removed once the aneurysm has been sealed off.
  • A dressing will be applied after the insertion site stops bleeding.