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Vessel Mapping


What is a Vessel Mapping?

A vessel mapping is a series of tests that are done prior to having a fistula or graft placed for dialysis. 

What is the purpose of a Vessel Mapping?

The purpose of vessel mapping is to provide a picture of your veins and arteries. This will then be given to the surgeon that will be creating your fistula or graft. A vessel mapping helps to ensure your fistula/graft has the highest chance of working properly.

How is the procedure performed?

You will have testing completed both in and out of the procedure room. The nurses will check your blood pressure in both arms, check your pulses with a Doppler machine in both arms and do a test to check the flow of blood to your hands. They will then insert an IV on both arms (typically in the back of the hand). Once the IVs are placed, you will be taken to the procedure room. IV contrast (dye) will be injected through the IVs and x-ray pictures will be taken during this time. This is to ensure there are no narrowings in your veins currently. The IVs will then be removed, and the physician will perform an ultrasound of both arms. The ultrasound will help to measure the size of the vessels in your arms.

Will the procedure be painful?

The only part of this procedure that may have some pain, is the starting of the IVs. We use very small IV needles to start the IVs to help minimize the pain you may feel.

What are the discharge instructions?

Watch for any signs of infection near the IV sites.

What are the risks and side effects?

The complication rate for this procedure is very low. Whenever a needle enters the skin, bleeding or infection can occur.

You may have an allergic reaction to any of the medications used. If you have a known allergy to any medications, especially x-ray contrast dye, notify our staff before the procedure takes place.