Myocardial biopsy

What is Myocardial Biopsy?

Myocardial biopsy is a procedure used to evaluate the health of the heart. During the procedure, a small piece of tissue is taken from the heart muscle (myocardium) and examined under a microscope. Myocardial biopsy helps to confirm or rule out different types of heart disease.

Preparation for Myocardial Biopsy

Before the procedure, your doctor will take a detailed medical history and order a series of tests, such as an electrocardiogram, stress test, and echocardiogram. He or she will also discuss any risk factors, such as allergies or the use of anticoagulants. Before the biopsy, you may be asked to fast for 8 to 12 hours.

Procedure for Myocardial Biopsy

The procedure is performed in an operating room and takes approximately 30 minutes. After explaining the procedure, the doctor will inject a local anesthetic into the skin of the chest wall. Then, he or she will make an incision into the chest. A needle is inserted through the chest wall and into the heart muscle to remove a small sample of tissue. Once the tissue is taken, the doctor will close the incision with stitches and possibly apply a thin layer of plastic or other material to help the area heal.

Types of Myocardial Biopsy

There are two types of myocardial biopsy: coronary artery biopsy and endomyocardial biopsy. Coronary artery biopsy is usually done to diagnose or rule out ischemic heart disease. This involves taking a small sample of tissue from one of the coronary arteries. Endomyocardial biopsy is usually done to monitor the effects of certain treatments on the heart muscle. This involves taking a small sample of tissue from the interior of the heart.

Risks of Myocardial Biopsy

Myocardial biopsy is considered a safe procedure, but there are several possible risks and complications. The most common complication is a small amount of bleeding. Additionally, arrhythmias, infection, and pneumothorax (air between the lung and chest wall) can occur. Serious complications are extremely rare.

Why is a Myocardial Biopsy Performed?

Myocardial biopsy is performed for several reasons. It can be used to diagnose or rule out ischemic heart disease, monitor the effects of treatments on the heart muscle, or evaluate the effectiveness of certain medications. Additionally, it can be used to diagnose infective endocarditis or to assess the severity of heart conditions.

When is a Myocardial Biopsy Needed?

Myocardial biopsy may be recommended when other diagnostic tests are inconclusive or if a treatment needs to be evaluated. Additionally, it may be performed if there is a suspected infection in the heart muscle.