Procedures that are less invasive than traditional open surgery are considered minimally invasive. Incisions are significantly smaller, sometimes only one-tenth the size of those used in typical open surgery. Miniature devices or tools—such as catheters, laparoscopes or endoscopes—are inserted through these tiny incisions or body openings to carry out procedures.

Less Pain, Quicker Recovery

Our highly skilled specialists at Portsmouth Regional Hospital take a conservative approach to treatment, choosing the least invasive options first. Many techniques are available to restore heart health. You benefit from less pain and scarring, reduced risk and quicker return to your regular activities.

Minimally invasive heart care at Portsmouth includes:

  • Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) and interventional cardiology – Quickly opens narrowed or blocked arteries using angioplasty, atherectomy and stents; done on an emergency basis to stop or prevent heart attack or as needed to treat cardiovascular conditions
  • Cardiac catheterization – Uses a small tube inserted into a blood vessel in the groin or wrist and X-rays to assess the heart and blood supply. We offer radial access (through the radial artery in the wrist) for some patients. Compared to traditional femoral artery (groin) access, radial access allows patients to resume normal activity soon after the procedure and reduces the risk of bleeding from the entry site.
  • Electrophysiology (EP)– Studies the heart's electrical system to diagnose abnormal heart rhythms. Our board-certified electrophysiologists treat abnormal rhythms through a variety of minimally invasive techniques, including:
  • Mini-thoracotomy - or minimally invasive valve surgery – A technique often preferred by women needing mitral valve surgery, because it involves a small incision in the side rather than a larger one in the chest

Many minimally invasive treatments take place in our specially equipped hybrid operating room, which allows us to transition quickly to traditional surgery in the same room if surgery's required.