Catheter-based therapies have had a profound effect on the practice of medicine and surgery. Use of these treatment modalities continues to increase each year. High doctor and patient acceptance is primarily attributable to the low morbidity and low incidence of complications that accompany catheter use. In fact, the efficacy and durability of some catheter-based therapies is marginal. If complication rates were higher, the risk/benefit balance might be shifted against endovascular intervention. Avoiding complications depends on understanding when and why they occur. A discussion of proper catheter skills should start with a discussion of wire/catheter complications. Subsequently, we discuss the various specialty guidewires and preformed angiographic catheters that are available and their proper usage. Finally, we use some clinically relevant situations to illustrate proper wire/catheter skills.
KeywordsAngiographic Catheter Hematoma Formation Pigtail Catheter Fogarty Balloon Column Strength
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