Intravascular ultrasound


Intravascular ultracsound is an imaging technique used to provide a cross-sectional view of the coronary arteries during stent insertion

What is an intravascular ultrasound?

Intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) uses high frequency sound waves to visualize the inside of your coronary arteries.

The ultrasound images are generated in real time and can be used by your consultant to help make sure the correct size coronary stent is inserted and fully expanded, helping to improve blood flow through narrowed arteries. 

Need to know

  • What happens during a IVUS? icon plus

    If you have coronary artery disease, your cardiologist might recommend a coronary stent. IVUS is used during the stent procedure to improve the precision of the stent placement and help make sure it's working correctly. You will be awake during the procedure, but may be given a sedative to help you relax.

    Your cardiologist will insert a thin, flexible tube (catheter) into an artery through a small cut in your groin or wrist. Local anaesthetic will be used to numb the area. The IVUS probe is on the end of the catheter, which is guided into your heart. The images provided give your consultant a view inside your artery to help them place the stent.

  • How to prepare for your ultrasound icon plus

    Your consultant will explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have. They'll let you know how to prepare, including whether you'll need to avoid food or certain medications beforehand. Like all procedures, there may be some risks and side effects involved. Your consultant will explain these to you.
  • After your ultrasound icon plus

    You may need to spend one night in hospital after your stent procedure. You should rest for a few days afterwards to allow your wrist or groin area to heal. Your cardiologist will let you know what to expect and will discuss the procedure with you, and let you know when you can get back to your usual routines and activities. They will also give you advice on medication and any necessary lifestyle changes.

Our cardiac teams

We have a cardiac unit at each of our main hospitals who support smaller cardiac teams at our outpatient centres.

The teams are made up of cardiac nurses and physiologists who will talk you through your scan and answer any questions you may have.

Our locations

From complex cardiothoracic surgery to diagnostic tests and procedures, we provide exceptional cardiac care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

Request a cardiac appointment

If heart symptoms are affecting your quality of life, we’re here to help. Our heart team is available to book an appointment with a cardiac specialist.

Call us today

020 7616 4988
This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
back to top