Fistulagrams are studies performed to monitor the function of the fistula or graft. Several clinical indicators are used to determine the frequency of these studies such as high venous pressures, low flow rates, prolonged bleeding, difficulty with cannulation, weak thrill or bruie or pulsatile site. Our plan is to be proactive in the care and maintenance of your dialysis access care.
Peripheral Arterial Angioplasty
Often times a study will indicate the presence of a narrowed area (stenosis) in the outflow vein or the inflow artery. When this occurs it is necessary to place a balloon catheter across the narrowed area and dilate that stenosis to prevent the graft from blocking (clot).
Peripheral Arterial Stenting
Many times a narrowed vessel will not respond to a balloon procedure alone. When this happens and only if this happens, we can place a metallic device called a ‘stent’ across the narrowed area and use the balloon to open the stent and keep the narrowed area open.
Fistula Maturation Procedures
During a Fistula Maturation Procedure, your surgeon will place a fistula, or surgically created pathway, in your arm. This process can take time until it is ready to use, and this waiting period is often called the “fistula maturation.”
If a fistula doesn’t mature properly, we can use an x-ray dye to “see” if we can find a reason why the maturation did not occur. After this process, we can then use our minimally invasive techniques to assist in the fistula maturation process by re-routing or re-directing the blood flow into the fistula.