Danbury Hospital’s experienced vascular surgeons care for patients with diseases that affect the circulatory system (arteries and veins throughout the body), excluding the heart.
The Vascular Laboratory of Danbury Hospital is one of just 30 facilities in the United States accredited by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) in all six areas of non-invasive vascular testing:
- Extracranial cerebrovascular
- Intracranial cerebrovascular
- Visceral vascular
- Peripheral arterial
- Peripheral venous
This means our vascular lab is ranked among the top two percent in the nation for high-quality testing for vascular disease—so you can depend on us for fast, accurate diagnoses that help speed your patients’ time to treatment.
Danbury Hospital’s vascular surgery team has expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of peripheral vascular disorders, including:
Cosmetic and Minimally Invasive Venous Procedures for varicose and spider veins
VNUS Closure®: This catheter-based technique utilizes radiofrequency to seal shut the vein, clinically proven to cause less pain and bruising than laser or surgical treatments.
Microphlebectomy: Larger veins may be removed through tiny skin punctures. This outpatient procedure uses small incisions that do not require stitches.
Sclerotherapy: Small veins can be treated with injection of a detergent-type agent, which reroutes blood to healthier veins.
Non-Invasive Vascular Testing
Carotid Duplex: Ultrasound is used to evaluate the carotid arteries located in the neck that feed the brain with blood. Gel is applied to the skin of the neck. A transducer is then placed on the gel-covered areas to obtain images and evaluate the blood flow in the arteries. Your doctor may order this test if you have physical examination findings or symptoms that suggest that you may have a blockage in the carotid artery.
Transcranial Doppler (TCD): This exam evaluates the blood vessels that supply the brain within the skull. It is performed with a small transducer that is placed on the skin of the face and head.
Venous Duplex: Also called a Doppler examination, ultrasound is used to evaluate the veins that carry blood to the heart from the legs or arms. Gel is applied to the skin of the legs or arms. A transducer is then placed on the gel-covered areas to obtain images and evaluate blood flow in the veins. Your doctor may order this to evaluate the cause of pain or swelling in your legs or arms.
Arterial Duplex: Also called a Doppler examination, ultrasound is used to evaluate the arteries that feed the arms and legs with blood. Gel is applied to the skin of the legs or arms. A transducer is then placed on the gel-covered areas to obtain images and evaluate the blood flow in the arms or legs. Your doctor may order this test to evaluate the cause of pain in the leg muscles with walking.
Arterial Pressures and Waveforms: Ultrasound and blood pressure cuffs are used to evaluate the arteries that supply the arms and legs with blood. Several blood pressure cuffs are placed in various locations on the legs or arms. When inflated, the cuffs provide blood pressure readings as well as waveforms. This test will locate areas of blockage with in the arteries. Your doctor may order this test to evaluate the cause of pain in the leg muscles with walking.
Abdominal Vascular DuplexAlso called a Doppler examination, ultrasound is used to evaluate the blood vessels that bring blood to and away from the abdominal organs. The aorta, the main blood vessel in the body, is also imaged to evaluate for aneurysms and or blockages. Gel is applied to the abdomen. A transducer is then placed on the gel-covered areas to obtain images and evaluate blood flow in the arteries and/or veins.
Open Vascular Surgery:
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm repair
- Thoracic aneurysm repair
- Carotid endarterectomy
- Lower and upper extremity arterial revascularization
- Renal and visceral arterial revascularization
- Vascular exposure for spine procedures
Endovascular (“inside the blood vessels”) procedures are performed through a small puncture wound or incision. This approach has many benefits compared to traditional open procedures, which require a larger incision and a longer recuperation time.
Percutaneous Transluminal Angioplasty (PTA) and Stenting: Following a small needle puncture in an artery in your arm or groin, a long, thin, flexible tube called a balloon-tip catheter is inserted. The catheter is guided through the arteries to the location of the blockage, where it is inflated. The balloon pushes the plaque in the artery against the artery walls, widening the vessel. At this point, if the result is not optimal, your vascular surgeon may place a tiny mesh-metal tube, called a stent, into the narrowed artery to prop it open.
Endovascular Aneurysm Repair (EVAR): This minimally invasive procedure corrects abdominal aortic aneurysms in less time than traditional open repair and can also be done under local or spinal anesthesia. Small incisions are made in both groins for image-guided placement of catheters containing self-expanding covered stents. Benefits of this procedure include a dramatically shorter hospital stay (2-3 days vs. 7-10 for traditional surgery) and a quicker total recovery time (one week vs. 6 weeks).
Thrombolytic (Lytic) Therapy: Arterial blockages in the arms, legs or can often be reopened with the use drugs called lytic agents. Administered through a small catheter in the artery, lytic agents dissolve the clot, avoiding the need for surgery. Lytic therapy can also be used to dissolve clots in the large veins of the arms and legs in order to preserve vein valve function and prevent pulmonary embolism.
Dialysis Access: Creates an entranceway into your bloodstream that lies completely beneath your skin and is easy to use. The access is usually in your arm, but sometimes in the leg, and allows blood to be removed and returned quickly, efficiently, and safely during dialysis or, less commonly, for other procedures requiring frequent access to your circulation.
Danbury Hospital is pioneering the use of a breakthrough technology called TransCarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR) to treat patients with carotid artery disease who are at risk for open surgery. While any repair of the carotid artery carries some risk of causing a stroke because of the repair itself, TCAR was designed to help minimize that risk by keeping potential stroke causing fragments away from the brain.
Like the open surgery, carotid endarterectomy (CEA), this new procedure involves direct access to the carotid artery, but through a much smaller incision at the neckline just above the clavicle instead of a longer incision on the neck. During the TCAR procedure, a tube inserted into the carotid artery is connected to a system that temporarily directs blood flow away from the brain to protect against dangerous debris from reaching the brain during the procedure. Surgeons then filter the blood before returning it to a vein in the groin, and a stent is implanted directly into the carotid artery to stabilize the plaque and prevent future strokes. The entire procedure is performed in less than half the time of CEA –limiting the stress on the heart and significantly cutting the risk of the patient having a stroke or heart attack during the procedure.
Patients who undergo the TCAR procedure recover quickly (typically spending just one night in the hospital) and almost always go home the next day to return to full and productive lives with less pain, smaller scars and a reduced risk of future strokes.
Your physician may recommend the TCAR procedure if you’ve been diagnosed with carotid artery disease and are not a suitable candidate for CEA. This may depend on your age or other existing medical conditions.