Pronounced: endo-vas-kyoo-lar embo-lie-zay-shun
This is a procedure to fill or close blood vessels. This prevents bleeding and rupture. It is an alternative to open surgery.
Endovascular embolization can treat many conditions such as:
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The procedure can be used alone or with other treatments. It can make your quality of life better by stopping bleeding or lowering the risk of rupture.
Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review possible problems such as:
Your chances of problems are higher for:
You may have:
Leading up to your procedure:
General anesthesia is used. It will block any pain and keep you asleep.
The groin will be shaved and sterilized. The catheter will be inserted here.
A tiny cut will be made in the groin to access an artery. The catheter will be placed in the artery. Then, it’s threaded up to the site. A special dye is injected. It makes it easier to see on a video monitor. X-rays will help the doctor find the right place. The blood vessel can be closed with:
They’re inserted though the catheter and to the site. Imaging tests will confirm the blood vessels are closed. The catheter and IV are removed. A bandage will cover the wound.
You will lie still for 6-8 hours.
30 minutes to several hours—the time depends on what needs to be done
Anesthesia will prevent pain during surgery. Medicines will ease pain after.
Normally, you will stay for 2 days. You will need to stay longer if you have any problems.
During your stay, the healthcare staff will take steps to lower your chances of infection such as:
There are also steps you can take to lower your chance of infection such as:
To help you heal faster, you may need:
Call your doctor if any of these occur:
Call for emergency medical services right away for:
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
Brain Aneurysm Foundation
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Brain Injury Canada
Heart and Stroke Foundation
Catheter embolization. Radiology Info—Radiological Society of North America website. Available at: https://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info.cfm?pg=cathembol. Updated April 30, 2018. Accessed July 18, 2018.
Endovascular (embolization) treatment of aneurysms. The Toronto Brain Vascular Malformation Study Group website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Accessed July 18, 2018.
Splenic artery aneurysm (SAA). EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T909466/Splenic-artery-aneurysm-SAA . Updated February 22, 2016. Accessed July 18, 2018.
Vascular malformations in the brain. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113725/Vascular-malformations-in-the-brain . Updated June 6, 2018. Accessed July 18, 2018.
Last reviewed May 2018 by
EBSCO Medical Review Board
Michael Fucci, DO, FACC
Last Updated: 7/18/2018