The Full form of PCI is Percutaneous Coronary Intervention. PCI, formerly known as angioplasty with stent is a non-surgical procedure that uses a thin flexible tube (a catheter) to place a small structure called a stent to open up blood vessels in the heart that have been narrowed by plaque buildup, a condition known as atherosclerosis. Primary PCI is the urgent use of PCI in people with acute myocardial infarction (heart attack), especially where there is evidence of heart damage on the ECG (ST elevation MI). PCI helps in improving blood flow, thus decreasing heart-related chest pain (angina), making a patient feel better and increasing his ability to be active. PCI is usually scheduled ahead of time. The doctor will explain the benefits and risks of the procedure. Before the procedure starts, patient must inform his doctor if he ever had a reaction to any contrast dye, iodine, or any serious allergic reaction (for example, from eating shellfish or from a bee sting), has asthma, is allergic to any medication, has any bleeding problems or are taking blood-thinning medication, had a history of kidney problems or diabetes, had body piercings on chest or abdomen, have had any recent change in his health and if he is, or may be, pregnant.
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