MAURO FERMARIELLO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MAURO FERMARIELLO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Coronary angioplasty. View of a male patient during a coronary angioplasty operation. An X-ray machine (upper left) is used to produce real- time angiograms, or arterial X-rays of the heart (not seen), enabling the surgeons to follow the progress of the operation. Angioplasty is the repair or reconstruction of blocked or narrowed arteries. In balloon angioplasty, a catheter is fitted with a balloon device which can be inflated to widen narrowed arteries. Atherosclerosis is a common cause of obstructed blood flow in which fatty plaques develop on the inner walls of arteries. A monitor displays the patient's vital signs at upper centre.
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