Fast action is the best way to beat a heart attack - and prevent or limit damage to precious heart muscle. Several interventional procedures performed by doctors at TriStar Southern Hills Heart Center can stop a heart attack before it starts.

This procedure is a non-surgical treatment for blocked or narrowed passages in one or more of the coronary arteries. Coronary angioplasty allows a normal supply of blood to flow through the heart muscle.

Angioplasty can be done in one of several ways, depending on the type of plaque (fatty deposits) blocking the artery and the size and shape of the artery. One common way is a balloon angioplasty, in which doctors insert a deflated balloon attached to a catheter into a blocked artery. Once the catheter is in place, the balloon is inflated to push plaque to the artery walls, thus increasing blood flow.

Following a balloon angioplasty, the doctor will often insert a stent into the widened artery to reduce the chance of immediate re-narrowing. Stents are wire mesh tubes that form a scaffold to support the walls of your arteries. They can be used following angioplasty or on their own to prevent blockages, increase blood flow and decrease chest pain.