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Cardiac Catheterization

Results

Cardiac catheterization is a test to check your heart and coronary arteries camera.gif.

Test results will be reviewed by a cardiologist and will be available after the procedure. Your doctor will be able to talk to you about some of the results immediately after the test.

Results will include whether:1

  • Coronary arteries are normal or have narrowing or blockage.
  • The heart's pumping action (ejection fraction) and pressures inside the heart chambers and blood vessels are normal.
  • The heart valves are working normally.

Many conditions can affect the results of a cardiac catheterization. Your doctor will discuss any significant abnormal results with you in relation to your symptoms and past health.

What Affects the Test

Reasons you may not be able to have the test or why the results may not be helpful include:

What To Think About

  • This test usually is not done on people who have had severe allergic reactions to contrast material, poorly controlled heart failure, life-threatening heart rhythm problems, or advanced kidney disease.
  • Cardiac catheterization is not usually done during pregnancy because the radiation could damage the developing fetus. But in a life-threatening emergency, this procedure may be necessary to help save a pregnant woman's life. In such cases, the fetus is protected as much as possible from radiation exposure with a lead apron.

Related Information

Citations

  1. Fischbach FT, Dunning MB III, eds. (2009). Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, 8th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.

Other Works Consulted

  • Chernecky CC, Berger BJ (2013). Laboratory Tests and Diagnostic Procedures, 6th ed. St. Louis: Saunders.

  • Fischbach FT, Dunning MB III, eds. (2009). Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, 8th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerRakesh K. Pai, MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
Specialist Medical ReviewerGeorge Philippides, MD - Cardiology
Last RevisedJuly 20, 2011
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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 20, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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