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Heart & Vascular Institute


Electrophysiology > What to Expect

What to Expect

EP procedures take place in the state-of-the-art electrophysiology lab on the second floor of Lancaster General Hospital. Prior to the study, we will carefully explain potential risks, steps you may need to take to get ready, and answer your questions. Afterwards, we will make sure you understand how to care for any incision site, and provide other follow-up information.


You will be asked to not eat or drink anything other than water starting at midnight before the day of your procedure. Your physician will give you specific instructions regarding medications prior to the procedure. If you are not given any instructions, please continue taking your medications as you normally would.

On the day of the procedure, an IV (intravenous line) will be started for any medications needed during the procedure. Your groin area will also be shaved to allow the physician to place catheters in your heart.

Family members will be asked to stay in the Sky Light waiting area. A pager will be given to them and the nurse will keep them updated throughout the procedure.

During your procedure

You will be lifted on to a special X-ray table. Electrode patches will be placed on your back and chest. You will also receive arm pads, leg pads, and a warming blanket.

At this time you will be sedated or under general anesthesia. You will then be prepped with a cleaning solutions and a sterile drape will be placed over you. Your electrophysiologist will then insert catheters (small flexible tubes) into your veins or arteries which will then be advanced into your heart using an X-ray system. The catheters will allow recording and testing of your heart’s electrical system.

After your procedure

When the procedure is complete, catheters will be removed, and pressure placed over your blood vessels to stop any bleeding. You will need to be in bed and have your leg straight for about 3 hours.

Your nurse will observe the catheter site and measure your blood pressure throughout your stay. You will be able to eat and drink following your procedure. Your IV will be discontinued when ordered by your physician.

Your electrophysiologist will talk to your family following the procedure and to you when you are fully awake. At this time, the results of the procedure will be reviewed and a plan of care for you will be given.

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