Computed Tomography Angiogram (CT Angiogram)
How It Feels
A CT angiogram is not painful. The table
you lie on may feel hard, and the room may be cool. It may be hard to lie still
during the test.
When the dye is given, you may:
- Feel a brief sting or pinch from the needle
going into your vein.
- Feel warm and flushed.
- Feel sick
to your stomach or get a headache.
- Have a metallic taste in your
Tell the technologist or your doctor how you are
The risk from having a CT angiogram is small. But
some risks include:
- Exposure to radiation. There is a slight chance
of developing cancer from some types of CT scans.1 The
chance is higher in children, young women, and people who have many radiation
tests. If you are concerned about this risk, talk to your doctor about the
amount of radiation this test may give you or your child. Make sure that the
test is needed.
allergic reaction to the dye (contrast material). But
this is rare, and most reactions are mild and can be treated with medicine.
- Kidney problems. The dye used during the test can cause kidney
damage in people whose kidneys don't work well.
The dye may also cause problems for people who take
metformin (such as Glucophage) to control their diabetes. Your doctor will tell
you when to stop taking metformin and when to start taking it again after the
test so you won't have a problem.
Results of a CT angiogram are usually ready for your doctor in 1 to 2 days.
Computed tomography angiogram
The blood vessels look normal,
and blood flow is not reduced.
The heart and heart valves look
No narrowing, blockage,
bulging (aneurysm), or large buildup of
plaque is seen.
One or more blood vessels are
partially or completely blocked.
The heart or the heart valves
An aneurysm or tear (dissection) in the
aorta is present.
A narrow spot in an artery may
suggest that a blood clot or a deposit of fat and calcium is reducing blood
flow through the blood vessel.
An abnormal pattern of blood
vessels may be a sign that a tumor is present.