SCOTT DIXON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCOTT DIXON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Coronary angioplasty, balloon expansion. Angiogram (blood vessel X-ray) footage of a blocked coronary artery being treated by a procedure known as coronary angioplasty. This operation uses a balloon catheter to open a blocked coronary artery and place a stent in the artery to reinforce the artery wall. Here, the balloon catheter is in place at the blockage (far left) and the balloon is being expanded. This improves the previously impaired blood supply to the heart muscle. This can prevent conditions such as angina and heart attacks. A contrast medium is injected into the blood to highlight the blood vessels, a technique known as angiography. For a sequence showing four stages in this operation, see clips K005/3496, K005/3482, K005/3421 and K005/3469.
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