Computed Tomography Angiogram (CT Angiogram)
What To Think About continued...
Certain things can make CT angiograms hard to read. For
example, a fast heart rate may make it hard to get a clear picture of the
coronary arteries. Or a large buildup of calcium may
show a narrowing of the arteries when there isn't one (false-positive)
or show that the arteries are fine when they are not (false-negative). But with a standard angiogram, these
things don't interfere with the test.
Another test, called a coronary calcium scan, also uses a CT scan to show how much calcium is in your coronary
arteries. This test is for people who have no symptoms of heart disease but may be at risk for getting it. To learn more, see the topic
Coronary Calcium Scan.
If your doctor suggests a CT
angiogram, you may want to ask what kind of scanner will be used. In most
cases, a 16– or 64–multi-slice (or multi-detector) CT scanner is used for the
CT angiogram. These scanners provide more detailed images of the blood vessels
and organs in less time than other imaging tests. But they may not be available
in all medical centers.