Radiology is a medical specialty that deals with the Medical Imaging of diseases of the human body. This is made up of Diagnostic Radiology, the traditional sub-specialty that deals with imaging diagnosis, and Interventional Radiology that deals with image-guided diagnostic and treatment procedures which require the use of interventional instruments throughout the human body.
WHAT IS INTERVENTIONAL RADIOLOGY?
Interventional Radiology is a relatively new sub-specialty of Radiology that offers alternative solutions to medical problems which until recently were dealt with using open surgery techniques. To perform interventional procedures, Interventional Radiology uses imaging techniques such as x-rays, angiography, ultrasonography (ultrasounds) and computed tomography (CT).
Interventional Radiologists closely cooperate with other clinical specialities, starting with the discussion of a case, moving to the identification of the problem through Diagnostic Radiology, and finally reaching the least interventional solution for the patient. The aim is to achieve a treatment solution that involves the fewest possible risks and complications and has the shortest possible post-operative recuperation phase (minimal invasive therapy).
Interventional Radiology is a constantly developing medical sub-specialty that keeps evolving due to the gradual improvement of materials used and imaging technology. However, the most important factor that led to the rapid recognition and establishment of Interventional Radiology has been the ingenuity of researchers and doctors who are constantly discovering new techniques and methods. In fact, many even call it the image-guided surgery of the future.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF INTERVENTIONAL RADIOLOGY;
As mentioned above, the main objective of Interventional Radiology is to achieve a treatment solution with the fewest possible risks and complications and the shortest post-operative recovery phase, replacing a major surgical procedure. In the vast majority of cases, interventional procedures are performed under local skin anaesthesia, while in other cases under mild sedation.
As a result, the advantages are:
- Reduced risk of complications
- Reduced duration of the recuperation phase
- Avoidance of general anaesthesia
- Reduced total costs of hospitalisation
WHO ARE INTERVENTIONAL RADIOLOGISTS?
Interventional Radiologists are physicians specialising in Diagnostic Radiology who specialised in Interventional Radiology techniques during or after their training. Their major advantage is that they have excellent knowledge of imaging methods that guide them in the performance of interventional operations. In the United States, this sub-specialty is now completely separated from Diagnostic Radiology and occupies a separate discipline of Medicine, subject to different conditions for specialisation.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN INTERVENTIONAL RADIOLOGY?
Interventional Radiology is roughly divided into "Vascular" and "Non-Vascular". Vascular Radiology deals with interventional operations performed in the arterial and venous system. Vascular Radiology includes Interventional Cardiology that deals with operations on the cardiovascular system, and Interventional Neuroradiology that deals with operations on the cerebrospinal venous system. The operations performed on the rest of the venous system in the human body are the core of Interventional Vascular Radiology. Non-Vascular Interventional Radiology includes a wider range of interventional operations and deals with the abdominal organs and the digestive tract, the abdominal and thoracic cavities, the urogenital system, the musculoskeletal system, and the breast.
WHICH PROCEDURES DOES INTERVENTIONAL RADIOLOGY INCLUDE?
A. VASCULAR INTERVENTIONAL PROCEDURES
1. Diagnostic Angiography
2. Percutaneous Angioplasty
3. Percutaneous Intraluminal Thrombolysis
4. Percutaneous Imaging and Restoration of Dialysis Fistulas
5. Percutaneous Intraluminal Blood Sampling from Endocrine Organs
6. Percutaneous Embolisation of Malignant Tumors
7. Percutaneous Embolisation of Malignant Tumours
8. Percutaneous Embolisation of Cerebral Aneurysms
9. Percutaneous Embolisation of Arteriovenous Cerebrospinal Malformations
10. Percutaneous Chemoembolisation of Hepatomas
11. Percutaneous Embolisation of Uterine Fibroids
12. Percutaneous Insertion of Hickman Lines for administering chemotherapy.
13. Percutaneous Intraluminal Selective Tumour Chemotherapy
14. Placement of Inferior Vena Cava Filters
15. Radiologically-guided placement of Intraluminal Furcated Vascular Stent-Grafts in the Abdominal Aorta and the Iliac Arteries
B. LIVER-BILIARY INTERVENTIONAL PROCEDURES
1. Percutaneous Liver Biopsy
2. Transjugular Liver Biopsy
3. Percutaneous Transhepatic Cholangiography
4. Transhepatic Biliary Drainage
5. Percutaneous Transhepatic Lithotripsy
6. Percutaneous Transjugular Endohepatic Portosystemic Shunt (TIPS)
C. INTERVENTIONAL BREAST PROCEDURES
1. Mammographically-guided preoperative identification of mass
2. Ultrasonographic breast mass biopsy with fine needle
3. Stereotactic breast biopsy with a biopsy gun
4. Ultrasonographic breast mass biopsy with a biopsy gun
5. Stereotactic breast biopsy with Mammoscan
6. Ultrasonographic breast mass biopsy with Mammoscan
D. OTHER TREATMENT INTERVENTIONAL PROCEDURES
1. Percutaneous Renal Biopsy
2. Transrectal Prostate Biopsy
3. Percutaneous Bone Biopsy
4. Percutaneous Biopsy of Lung Masses
5. Percutaneous Biopsy of Abdominal Masses
6. Percutaneous Fluid Collection Drainage
7. Percutaneous Nephrostomy
8. Percutaneous Gastrostomy
9. Percutaneous Vertebroplasty
10. Percutaneous Neurolysis of the Celiac Plexus
11. Placement of Oesophageal Stent
12. Placement of Colonic Stent
13. Placement of Tracheal Stent
14. Percutaneous Radiofrequency Ablation of Tumours
15. Intraluminal unblocking of fallopian tubes