Interventional radiology, often abbreviated as IR or VIR for Vascular and Interventional Radiology, represents a specialized field within radiology. It employs minimally invasive, image-guided procedures for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases across a wide spectrum of organ systems. These systems encompass, but are not restricted to, the vascular, gastrointestinal, hepatobiliary, genitourinary, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and central nervous systems.
The fundamental principle underpinning interventional radiology is the utilization of the least invasive methods feasible to diagnose and treat patients. This approach aims to minimize risks, enhance health outcomes, and accelerate the overall recovery process.
Another form of Interventional radiology is angiography which used to guide procedures that treat blood vessel abnormalities. If the artery is narrowed, a tiny balloon can be inflated (and occasionally, a piece of metal tubing called a ‘stent’ can be inserted) to widen the artery and restore normal blood flow. This procedure is called angioplasty. Angiography is also used to guide procedures where abnormal blood vessels need to be blocked off if they are bleeding (a process called ‘embolisation’) or as part of other medical investigations or surgical treatments
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