What is Vascular and Interventional Radiology?

Vascular and Interventional Radiology is a medical specialty that utilizes state-of-the-art imaging modalities to diagnose and guide the minimally invasive treatment of various diseases.

Who are Vascular and Interventional Radiologists?

Vascular and Interventional Radiologists are doctors who specialize in minimally invasive, targeted diagnosis and treatment procedures using state-of-the-art imaging modalities for guidance.  They are experts in fluoroscopy, ultrasound, computerized tomography (CT), and magnetic resonance (MR) imaging.  These imaging modalities guided Vascular and Interventional Radiologists in diagnosis and/or treating diseases through tiny specialized instruments, such as needles and catheters, inserted through blood vessels and skin.  Interventional Radiologists work closely with primary care physicians and other specialists to ensure patients receive the best possible care.

What are the advantages of Vascular and Interventional Radiology?

While no treatment is risk-free, the ones associated with vascular and interventional radiology procedures are very minimal.  The cutting-edge procedures of vascular and interventional radiology are considered advanced practices in medicine.  Most procedures can be performed on an outpatient basis or require a short hospital stay.  General anesthesia is usually not required.  Risk, pain and recovery time are significantly reduced.  Vascular and interventional radiology procedures can be less expensive than other alternatives.

How are Vascular and Interventional Radiology procedures done?

Interventional radiologists use imaging modalities like fluoroscopy, ultrasound, CT scan or MRI to see inside the patient’s body, enabling them to pinpoint the problem and map out the best and least invasive way to address it.  Via a small nick in the skin, they guide needles and catheters through the vascular system or other pathways in the body to diagnose and/or treat diseases or tumors directly at the source.

What do Vascular and Interventional Radiologist treat?

Interventional procedures can be divided broadly into vascular and nonvascular.  Vascular angiographic procedures predominantly involve the use of catheters and guidewire combinations within the vascular system.  Percutaneous (performed through a small nick in the skin) vascular procedures include:

  • Infusion of drugs for liver cancer
  • Occlusion of vessels (embolization) in aneurysm, arteriovenous malformation (AVM), bleeding and cancer
  • Recanalization of vessels (angioplasty)
  • Placement of transcatheter devices (stents and stent/grafts)
  • Foreign body retrieval


Nonvascular procedures or soft tissue procedures include the use of needles, trocars, drainage catheters and guidewires.  These are performed within the hepatobiliary system, the urinary system in cases of obstructions, other organ systems and cavities with abscess or abnormal fluid collection, and percutaneous ablation of tumors (cancer).  Capabilities of nonvascular procedures include:

  • Needle localization
  • Percutaneous needle biopsy
  • Percutaneous drainage
  • Percutaneous dilatation and stent placement



  • 4-Vessel Cerebral and Carotid Angiogram/Embolization (Coil, Balloon, Particulate, Glue)
  • Thrombolysis
  • Hepatic Angiogram and Transarterial Chemoembolization (TACE) or Radioembolization using Yttrium – 90. 
  • Aortogram/Endoluminal Repair
  • Renal Angiogram/Stenting/Embolization
  • Peripheral Angiogram/Stenting
  • Mesenteric Angiogram/Embolization
  • Pelvic Angiogram/Embolization
  • Bronchial Angiogram/Embolization
  • Spinal Angiogram/Embolization
  • Pulmonary Angiogram/Embolization
  • Venogram
  • Inferior Vena Cava (IVC) Filter Placement
  • Transjugular Intrahepatic Porto-systemic Shunt (TIPS)
  • Adrenal/Renal Venous Sampling
  • Central Venous Access Catheter Placement
    • Peripherally Inserted Central Venous Catheter (PICC) line
    • Port-a-Cath
    • Arm Port
    • Dialysis Access and Angioplasty of AV Fistula
      • Internal Jugular (IJ)
      • Perm Cath
    • Intravascular Foreign Body Retrieval
  • Sclerotherapy of Venous Malformation



  • Percutaneous Transhepatic Cholangiogram (PTC)
  • Percutaneous Transhepatic Biliary Drainage (PTBD)
  • Biliary Stenting/Choledochoplasty
  • Biliary Stone Extraction
  • Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) of various solid tumors (Liver, Lung, Bone and Soft Tissue, Renal, Adrenal)
  • Percutaneous Vertebroplasty and Cementoplasty (Osteoporosis, Bone Metastasis, Hemangioma, Traumatic Fractures)
  • Percutaneous Spinal Intervention for back pain
    • Percutaneous Lumbar Interspinous Decompression
    • Nucleoplasty / Percutaneous Plasma Disc Decompression
    • Nerve root blocking
    • Facet joint infiltration
    • Discography
    • Epidural infiltration
  • Percutaneous Fine and Core Needle Biopsies of tumors or organs under image guidance (CT Scan, Ultrasound or Fluoroscopy)
  • Percutaneous Drainage of Fluid/Abscess (with or without Catheter Placement)
  • Thoracentesis/Pigtail Drainage Catheter Placement
  • Paracentesis/ Pigtail Drainage Catheter Placement
  • Percutaneous Cyst (Hepatic, Renal and Bone/ABC) Puncture with Sclerotherapy
  • Percutaneous Nephrostomy/Ureteral Stenting
  • Cholecystostomy
  • Pericardiocentesis
  • Myelogram
  • Sialogram
  • Sinugram

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