A cardiac CT for calcium scoring test, or simply calcium scoring, is a diagnostic procedure that involves taking pictures of the heart and shows calcium as well as obstructions in the coronary arteries. Your doctor will be able to spot any abnormalities in the structure and operation of your heart with the use of photographs.
Why Are Calcium Levels In People Measured?
If your Denver heart doctor feels that other tests, such as stress tests, electrocardiograms, echocardiograms, or chest X-rays, do not provide enough information about your heart, calcium scoring may be recommended. Your doctor can learn more about the following topics with the aid of a calcium-scoring test:
- The design of your heart and the efficiency of its blood pump.
- The heart’s muscles can suffer damage by having a heart attack.
- The quantity of plaque buildup and the degree of coronary artery constriction.
- The fluid-filled space around the surface of the heart.
- Any changes to the major blood arteries leaving the heart.
- The possibility of having a heart attack.
Is It Possible That It Might Help With Heart Disease Diagnosis?
This examination can be performed to evaluate the level of calcium in your heart’s arteries. Your calcium score provides your doctors with a rough estimate of the amount of plaque that has already developed in your heart’s arteries but hasn’t yet resulted in any issues. Your calcium score may be able to predict if you’ll have a heart attack. Additionally, it might give you and your doctor advice on how much more proactive you should be in lowering heart attack risk factors. This is highly beneficial to you if your risk is considered to be “moderate.”
Calcium scoring is not advised as a routine screening approach for persons who do not exhibit any heart disease symptoms and have a low risk of experiencing a heart attack. Calcium scoring won’t reveal anything further if you’ve already had a heart attack, undergone coronary bypass surgery, or had a coronary stent installed.
If you think you might be pregnant, talk to your doctor or primary care provider about any recent illnesses, problems, and drugs you’re taking, as well as any potential allergies. You’ll be given guidelines that state you shouldn’t eat or drink for the entire four hours before the exam, and you should also refrain from smoking and consuming caffeine.
If you’ve already experienced an allergy to contrast material, your doctor may suggest taking certain medications to lower your risk of experiencing an allergic reaction. These medications must be consumed at least 12 hours before your test. Leave your jewelry at home and dress casually and loosely. You may have to wear a gown.
What Purposes Does The Calcium Scoring Test Serve?
For the duration of the test, you must lay flat on a table that is attached to the CT scanner. Monitoring electrodes will now be attached to your chest to record the electrical signal activity of your heart. The sharp images that the computer produces when it is connected to the scanner are made possible by the electrodes. The table will begin to move inside the machine when you are ready. The scanner surrounds you in an arch, yet never comes into direct touch with you. The examination won’t hurt at all.
The technician will keep a tight eye on you as he observes you out the window. A two-way intercom will let you communicate with the person. You’ll receive instructions from the technician on how long to hold your breath. The scanning process typically takes five to ten minutes. Talk about getting a calcium score test with your primary care doctor.