Angioplasty Recovery Time: The Do's and Don'ts

Healthy Heart|May.14, 2018

Among the many treatment options available to people with heart conditions, Angioplasty is probably the most familiar and recognised form of treatment with people and doctors alike. The delicate process involves identifying a blockage in a vessel by injecting dye under an X-ray and then opening up the blockage with a stent. Thanks to an innovative technology, there is now a way to make the angioplasty more precise than before. This technology is called OCT and here's how it can help get accurate results

Consider this — over five lakh Stent Placement procedures are performed annually in India, making this a common enough procedure in treating heart attacks today. In fact, advancements like these have made heart surgery less invasive and drastically cut down the recovery time.

Needless to say, our hearts are in good hands ... at least while we're in the operation theatre. What you do when you're out of surgery will determine how well and how fast you recover. So here are some best practices you should follow to maintain a healthy heart during your angioplasty recovery time.

Post Operation

If you're having a planned coronary angioplasty, you'll probably be discharged from the hospital the same day or the following day. Before you leave the hospital, do note:

  • Any medication you need to take

  • Changes you need to make to your diet and lifestyle

  • Wound care and hygiene advice

  • Your follow-up appointment with the doctor

You may have a bruise where the catheter was inserted. So, just keep an eye on it for the next few days to ensure proper healing. You may also experience tiredness for a few days after the procedure. This is totally normal and will pass in a week's time.

Post Discharge

Once you leave the hospital, your post-procedure care will involve taking the prescribed medications and making some important lifestyle changes. The general angioplasty recovery time is about two weeks, but this can change based on your condition.

  • Take Your Medication: It's essential to stick to your medication schedule. Stopping medication early may increase your risk of a recurrent heart problem.

  • Dial Down the Activities: It's important to only indulge in light activities for the first week after the procedure. Exercise is great to help your heart recover, but heavy lifting is a strict no-no. Your doctor can give you more insight into the things you can and cannot do.

  • Avoid Driving: Driving is not advised for at least a week after the surgery. To avoid the risk of having another cardiac issue, take the back seat till you get the green light from your doctor.

  • Quit Smoking: One of the best things to do for your heart after an angioplasty is to give up smoking. Smoking can narrow your blood vessels and lead to the build-up of plaque — the very reasons you needed an angioplasty in the first place.

  • Change Your Diet: Eating the right foods is essential to maintaining a healthy heart, especially after a surgery. Consider switching to a plant-based diet that includes heart-healthy foods, such as nuts, berries, and whole grains.

  • Go Through a Cardiac Rehabilitation Program: Cardiac Rehabilitation is usually offered for people who undergo angioplasty and stent placement surgeries. It helps expedite recovery from heart surgery and return to everyday life as quickly as possible. Take the opportunity to partner a physical therapist or a dietician and formulate a plan to build a stronger heart.

Recovering from a heart surgery is all about patient and smart choices. What you do today can change the life you'll live tomorrow. All it takes is a few simple tweaks to your lifestyle to ensure a steady heart and healthy life ahead.


Disclaimer: This publication/editorial/article is for information and awareness purpose and does not constitute or imply an endorsement, sponsorship or recommendation of any Products. Please consult your doctor/healthcare practitioner before starting any diet, medication or exercise.