is CT Coronary Angiography?
CT coronary angiography is an incredible
new procedure that provides detailed visualization of the
heart's arteries. We are proud to be one of the first outpatient
centers in the country to offer this cutting edge technology.
CT coronary angiography can be performed more quickly, comfortably
and affordably than standard coronary angiography. The images
are very similar to those provided by invasive heart catheterization,
without catheters and without the need to insert equipment
into the body. Only an IV line and a small amount of dye
are required, so there is minimal risk. This new procedure
takes advantage of the huge advances made in CT scanning
and software processing technology, and allows us to create
3-dimensional images of the heart.
How is this test
different from a Heart Scan
(Coronary Calcium Score)?
A Heart Scan allows us
to precisely measure calcium deposits, which are markers
of plaque formation in the coronary arteries. It does not
let us measure the degree of narrowing in the arteries.
The CT angiogram gives us precise pictures
of how the blood is flowing through the arteries and whether
there are any restrictions in blood flow. It also allows
visualizations of "soft plaques" which may or may not have
What will I experience
during the procedure?
No hospitalization is required and the entire procedure
usually lasts only 30 minutes. The actual scan itself only
takes about 15 seconds, and you remain fully clothed. First,
a regular IV is placed in the arm and contrast dye is injected.
Next, you hold your breath for 10 seconds and pictures are
taken of the heart. There is no long catheter threaded into
the internal structures as with the traditional hospital
catheterization procedure, thus reducing the risk of side
effects. The IV is taken out after the procedure is completed
and you can go home.
Is there any other
special preparation that may be required?
Depending on your individual case, you
may be required to take a medication to slow your heart
the morning of the study. You should not experience any
side effects from this. You may be asked to fast for a few
hours before the study and refrain from drinking caffenated
beverages. Lab reports will be required prior to the study,
if they haven't been done lately, to assess your kidney
of CT angiography are best for:
of patients with high calcium scores (usually >100).
with unusual chest pain syndromes.
with questionable stress test results.
evaluation of the arteries before a surgical procedure.
monitor of patients who have had stent placements or open
heart surgeries in the past to determine if the stents
or bypass grafts are still open and functioning adequately.
follow-up of heart transplant patients.
of congenital heart anomalies.
- Patients with unusual chest pain syndromes and/or SOB
I a candidate for this test?
You should discuss whether this
is an appropriate test for you with your physician. Since
it is so new, your doctor may not be familiar with this
test. We would be happy to discuss CT angiography with your
doctor. A report of the findings will be mailed to your
physician if you desire.
will I get the results?
At Florida Institute for Advanced
Diagnostic Imaging our physician will review the results
with you immediately after the test. You will have plenty
of time to have any questions answered. If necessary the
results can be sent to your doctor immediately.
much radiation is involved?
There is significantly less radiation
than there is with a standard heart catheterization.
much does this test cost?
The CT coronary angiogram costs $1250 - including physician
visit. This is much less expensive than a standard angiogram
which costs about $7,000.
this procedure being covered by insurance companies?
We can provide you with forms to submit but cannot guarantee your insurance company will pay.
For specific instructions/restriction
on exam preparation, please refer to our Patient