Diagnosing Heart Disease with Computed Tomography Coronary Angiogram
Computed Tomography Coronary Angiogram (CTCA) is an imaging device that evaluates coronary arteries. CT scans use X-rays to prepare cross-sectional images of the body part. Cardiac CT uses CT technology to study heart anatomy, pulmonary veins and arteries, the aorta, and coronary circulation. You can get your cardiac CT scan done at the interventional radiology boise.
Diagnosing heart disease with computed tomography coronary angiogram
During the CTCA procedure, the patient lies on a table that is moved through a large donut-shaped machine that takes X-rays of the heart from different angles. The image will then be computer-generated into a 3D image of the heart and blood vessels. The doctor can see on the computer screen if there is any blockage or narrowing in the arteries, which is the leading cause of the decrease in blood flow to the heart.
CTCA is generally used for treating coronary artery disease, the most common form of heart disease, because it can detect even minor amounts of plaque buildup in the coronary arteries. It is also less invasive and has a lower risk of complications than traditional angiography, which involves inserting a catheter into the arteries and injecting a contrast dye to picture the blood vessels.
However, CTCA is not suited for everyone, particularly those with kidney disease, as the contrast dye used in the procedure can harm the kidneys. It is essential to discuss any health concerns or risks with your doctor before undergoing the procedure.
How to prepare for CTCA
- Consult with your doctor.
Consult your doctor and inform them about your medical history and any troubles before taking the test. Your doctor will also give you specific instructions before preparing for the test.
- Avoid caffeine and other stimulants.
Avoid consuming caffeine or other stimulants for at least a day before the test, as it can impact the heart rate and blood pressure.
You have to fast for a few hours before the test, typically four to six hours before the procedure. Your doctor will give you instructions about the duration of the fast and the foods or drinks you can eat or drink during that time.
If you take any medication, inform your doctor before the test. Medications like beta-blockers may need to be stopped before the test, while others may need to be taken as usual.
- Wear comfortable clothes
You should wear loose and comfortable clothing for the test, as you may be asked to change into a gown before the procedure.