To schedule a Cardiac CT call:
The cardiac computed tomographic angiography (CCTA) is a test that is used to see the heart’s arteries, showing if they have developed important disease that can cause narrowing or blockage. This is what coronary artery disease (CAD) is all about. This same test can be used to identify other concerns that relate to problems with heart function, heart valves, pulmonary arteries and the aorta.
An iodine-based dye (contrast dye) is injected into one of the patient’s veins during the scan. The contrast dye travels through the blood vessels, which helps highlight them on the x-ray pictures.
A coronary calcium scan looks for specks of calcium (called calcifications) in the walls of the coronary arteries. Calcifications are an early sign of coronary artery disease and reflect the impact cholesterol can have on the blood vessels. The test can show whether a person is at increased risk for a heart attack or other heart problems even before signs and symptoms occur.
The coronary calcium scan is simple and easy for the patient, who lies quietly in the scanner machine for about 10 minutes. The scanner takes pictures of the heart that show whether the coronary arteries have calcifications. The “calcium score” corresponds to risk, not blockage. Doctors study the pictures to see whether your calcium score puts you at risk for heart problems over the next 4 to 5 years.
To receive a Cardiac CT at Heritage Valley Health System, a patient must be referred for the test by his or her physician. Only after the patient’s health status is evaluated can the test be scheduled and performed. Cardiac CT scans are performed on an outpatient basis. An out-of-pocket co-payment may be required at the time of the test based on the patient's insurance coverage.