Cardiac Procedures

Carolina Cardiology Consultants performed the listed procedures at Greenville Memorial Hospital, Bon Secours St. Francis Health and Baptist Easley. We work closely with the cardiac cath lab staff at each facility to provide input regarding the up to date equipment and cardiac procedures. Our cardiologists specialize in cardiac catherization, angioplasty, stenting and pacemaker placement.

Recently, two of our cardiologists used the Impella Device to perform cardiac angioplasty. This procedure was the first in South Carolina.


Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty (PCI), or Angioplasty, is an invasive procedure performed to reduce or eliminate blockages in coronary arteries. The goal of PCI is to restore blood flow to blood-deprived heart tissue, reduce the need for medication, and eliminate or reduce the number of episodes of angina (chest pain).

Opening a blockage, or a plaque, in a coronary artery typically involves the use of an angioplasty balloon. When the blockage is calcified or so dense that a balloon cannot be placed, other devices are used. Plaque can be cut out, ablated with a laser, or bored out using a surgical drill bit. Often, a stent is implanted after angioplasty to keep the artery open and prevent restenosis (regrowth of plaque).

CT Angiography

CT (Computed Tomography) Angiography (CTA) is an examination that uses x-rays to visualize blood flow in arterial and venous vessels throughout the body, from arteries serving the brain to those bringing blood to the lungs, kidneys, and arms and legs. CT combines the use of x-rays with computerized analysis of the images. Beams of x-rays are passed from a rotating device through the area of interest in the patient’s body from several different angles to create cross-sectional images, which then are assembled by computer into a three-dimensional picture of the area being studied.

Cardiac Catheterization

This is a procedure done on the heart. The cardiologist inserts a thin plastic tube (catheter) into an artery or vein in the arm or leg. From there it can be advanced into the chambers of the heart or into the coronary arteries. This test can measure blood pressure within the heart and how much oxygen is in the blood. It’s also used to get information about the pumping ability of the heart muscle and check for blockage in the coronary arteries.

To help you through the process, we’ve developed these patient education sheets to make your experience as seamless as possible:

Transesophageal Echocardiogram

A Transesophageal Echocardiogram, or TEE Echo, allows your doctor to record images of your heart from inside your esophagus. TEE uses high-frequency sound waves (ultrasound) to make detailed pictures of your heart and the arteries that lead to and from it. The echo transducer that produces the sound waves is attached to a thin tube that passes through your mouth, down your throat and into your esophagus. Because the esophagus is so close to the upper chambers of the heart, very clear images of those heart structures and valves can be obtained.

Peripheral Vascular Intervention

Peripheral Vascular Intervention procedures help to open blockages in peripheral arteries and restore blood flow to the lower body, legs or kidneys. If it is determined that a blockage is causing an obstruction, Angioplasty is performed. Angioplasty involves inflating a tiny balloon within the obstructed artery in order to open the narrowed area. After Angioplasty, one or more stents may be placed to keep the artery open.

Calcium Scoring

Coronary Calcium Scoring is a technique used to determine if coronary calcification is present in your coronary arteries. It is a CT scan that captures cross-sectional images of the heart at sub-second rates. This unique CT technology allows the detection of calcium in the coronary arteries which is directly related to the total atherosclerotic plaque buildup and compares it to standards for your age and gender.