In patients, where the puncture site is at the arm or wrist, they may be allowed to walk around the observation room. These patients will be asked not to bend their arm or lie on it. The nurses will provide pain medications to alleviate back pain if induced by lying on the back for a very long time. Some of the symptoms that needs to be notified to the nurses or doctors without delay are -
• Pain in the insertion site
• Bleeding in the insertion site
• Tingling or numbness in the fingers
• Chest pain
• Difficulties in breathing
• Irregular heart beat
Rash/hivesRedness, bruise, small swelling or lump in the insertion site is considered normal and will duly subside in a few days. Patients may be asked to drink lots of water after cardiac catheterization to remove the contrast medium from the body.
The doctor will plan the treatment options based on the results of the test and discuss it with the patient and family. Some patients will be allowed to go home on the same day and some will be monitored overnight at the hospital. Others may stay back for further tests or surgery depending on the outcome.
Few restrictions for the patient to follow at home after catheterization are -
• Leave the bandage and dressing in place until instructed (usually - 24 to 48 hrs).
• Lifting heavy weights must be avoided.
• Avoid strenuous exercise.
• Contact the doctor, when there are signs of infection.