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Calcium Scoring & Coronary CT Angiography

Calcium Scoring and CT Angiography (CT A) can help determine whether heart disease is present, even in its earliest stages before the onset of any”symptoms. With this information your doctor can help you reduce the risk of a heart attack.

What is Calcium Scoring?

Calcium Scoring goes from 0 to 1,000. It detects the presence of calcium in the walls of your arteries, which can help predict heart disease. The presence of calcium indicates that the progress of atherosclerosis is occurring. Computed Tomography (CT) is used to take a series of images of your heart and coronary arteries. The calcium score is calculated tells you whether you fall into a low, medium, or high risk for heart disease.

How Should You Prepare for Calcium Scoring?

This test requires no special preparation, dye injections or fasting. CT Calcium Scoring does require radiation exposure.

What is Coronary CTA?

Coronary CTA can detect the presence of plaque buildup and severity of blood vessel narrowing by providing detailed images of blood flow in coronary arteries

What is the Procedure For Coronary CT Angiography (CTA)?

An IV is inserted and contrast dye is injected into a vein to visualize the coronary arteries and other structures, such as heart chambers and large vessels that carry blood in and out of the heart. During this test you blood pressure and heart rate will be monitored. The contrast dye may cause you to feel a warm flush all over your body, but this feeling will pass quickly. A Computed Tomography (CT) machine generates a series of three-dimensional images that are reviewed by a specially trained radiologist and/or cardiologist.

What is the Preparation For Coronary CT Angiography (CTA)?

Before you have this test it is important to closely follow these prep instructions:

  • Do not exercise the day before the test
  • Do not have anything by mouth at least 4 hours prior to the test
  • Do not consume anything containing caffeine (including decaf coffee, tea, or soda) 12 hours before the test
  • Take your usual daily medications, unless otherwise advised by your doctor. You should NOT take any erectile dysfunction medications (Viagra, Levitra, or Cialis) for 48 hours before the test
  • If you are prescribed a beta blocker to lower your heart rate, take it the morning of the test
  • Women should not wear underwire bras
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