Coronary angiogram – Mayo Clinic


Coronary angiogram

Coronary angiogram

Coronary angiogram

In a coronary angiogram, a catheter is inserted into an artery in the groin, arm or neck and threaded through the blood vessels to the heart. A coronary thrombosis angiogram can show blocked or narrowed blood vessels in the heart .
A coronary thrombosis angiogram is a routine that uses x-ray visualize to see your kernel ‘s blood vessels. The quiz is generally done to see if there ‘s a restriction in blood flow going to the center .
coronary angiograms are contribution of a general group of procedures known as heart ( cardiac ) catheterizations. Cardiac catheterization procedures can both diagnose and treat heart and rake vessel conditions. A coronary angiogram, which can help diagnose center conditions, is the most common type of cardiac catheterization procedure.

During a coronary angiogram, a type of dye that ‘s visible by an x-ray machine is injected into the blood vessels of your kernel. The x-ray machine quickly takes a series of images ( angiograms ), offering a look at your rake vessels. If necessary, your doctor can open clog center arteries ( angioplasty ) during your coronary thrombosis angiogram .

Why it’s done

Your sophisticate may recommend that you have a coronary thrombosis angiogram if you have :

  • Symptoms of coronary artery disease, such as chest pain (angina)
  • Pain in your chest, jaw, neck or arm that can’t be explained by other tests
  • New or increasing chest pain (unstable angina)
  • A heart defect you were born with (congenital heart disease)
  • Abnormal results on a noninvasive heart stress test
  • Other blood vessel problems or a chest injury
  • A heart valve problem that requires surgery

Because there ‘s a small risk of complications, angiograms are n’t normally done until after noninvasive heart tests have been performed, such as an electrocardiogram, an echocardiogram or a stress test .


As with most procedures done on your affection and lineage vessels, a coronary angiogram has some risks, such as radiation exposure from the X-rays used. major complications are rare, though. electric potential risks and complications include :

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Injury to the catheterized artery
  • Irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias)
  • Allergic reactions to the dye or medications used during the procedure
  • Kidney damage
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Infection

How you prepare

In some cases, coronary thrombosis angiograms are performed on an emergency footing. More normally, though, they ‘re scheduled in improvement, giving you meter to prepare .
Angiograms are performed in the catheterization ( cath ) lab of a hospital. Your health care team will give you specific instructions and talk to you about any medications you take. General guidelines include :

  • Don’t eat or drink anything after midnight before your angiogram.
  • Take all your medications to the hospital with you in their original bottles. Ask your doctor about whether to take your usual morning medications.
  • If you have diabetes, ask your doctor if you should take insulin or other oral medications before your angiogram.

What you can expect

Before the procedure

Before your angiogram procedure starts, your health care team will review your aesculapian history, including allergies and medications you take. The team may perform a physical examination and check your critical signs — blood coerce and pulse .
You ‘ll besides empty your bladder and change into a hospital gown. You may have to remove contact lenses, eyeglasses, jewelry and hairpins .

During the procedure

Cardiac catheter procedure approaches

Catheter approaches in a cardiac catheter procedure

Cardiac catheter procedure approaches

In a cardiac catheter procedure, a health worry provider inserts a catheter in an artery in the wrist ( radial artery ) or in the groin ( femoral artery ). The catheter is then threaded through the lineage vessels to the affection .
For the routine, you lie on your back on an x ray table. Because the table may be tilted during the procedure, safety straps may be fastened across your breast and stage. x-ray cameras will move over and around your point and chest to take pictures from many angles .
An IV telephone line is inserted into a vein in your arm. You may be given a ataractic through the IV to help you relax, vitamin a well as other medications and fluids. You ‘ll be identical sleepy and may drift off to sleep during the operation, but you ‘ll distillery be able to be easily awakened to follow any instructions .
Electrodes on your chest monitor your heart throughout the procedure. A blood pressure manacle tracks your lineage atmospheric pressure and another device, a pulse oximeter, measures the measure of oxygen in your lineage.

A humble sum of hair may be shaved from your groin or arm where a flexible tube ( catheter ) will be inserted. The area is washed and disinfected and then numbed with an injection of local anaesthetic .
A belittled incision is made at the entry site, and a curtly credit card tube ( cocktail dress ) is inserted into your artery. The catheter is inserted through the sheath into your blood vessel and carefully threaded to your heart or coronary arteries .
Threading the catheter should n’t cause trouble, and you should n’t feel it moving through your torso. Tell your health care team if you have any discomfort .
Dye ( contrast material ) is injected through the catheter. When this happens, you may have a abbreviated sensation of flushing or warmheartedness. But again, tell your health care team if you feel pain or discomfort .
The dye is easy to see on roentgenogram images. As it moves through your lineage vessels, your doctor of the church can observe its flow and identify any blockages or constricted areas. Depending on what your sophisticate discovers during your angiogram, you may have extra catheter procedures at the lapp time, such as a balloon angioplasty or a stent placement to open up a narrowed artery. early noninvasive tests, such as ultrasound, may help your repair evaluate identified blockages .
Having an angiogram takes about one hour, although it may be longer, particularly if combined with early cardiac catheterization procedures. training and post-procedure care can add more fourth dimension .

After the procedure

When the angiogram is over, the catheter is removed from your branch or breakwater and the incision is closed with manual press, a clamp or a little chew .
You ‘ll be taken to a recovery sphere for notice and monitor. When your condition is stable, you return to your own room, where you ‘re monitored regularly .
You ‘ll need to lie two-dimensional for respective hours to avoid shed blood if the catheter was inserted in the groin. During this time, pressure may be applied to the incision to prevent shed blood and promote heal .
You may be able to go home plate the same day, or you may have to remain in the hospital nightlong. Drink enough of fluids to help flush the dye from your body. If you ‘re feeling up to it, have something to eat .
Ask your health caution team when to resume taking medications, bathing or showering, working, and doing other normal activities. Avoid strenuous activities and intemperate lift for several days .
Your puncture site is probable to remain tender for a while. It may be slenderly bruised and have a small blow .

Call your doctor’s office if:

  • You notice bleeding, new bruising or swelling at the catheter site
  • You develop increasing pain or discomfort at the catheter site
  • You have signs of infection, such as redness, drainage or a fever
  • There’s a change in temperature or color of the leg or arm that was used for the procedure
  • Weakness or numbness in the leg or arm where the catheter was inserted
  • You develop chest pain or shortness of breath

If the catheter web site is actively bleed and does n’t stop after you ‘ve applied imperativeness to the site, contact 911 or emergency aesculapian services. If the catheter site suddenly begins to swell, contact 911 or emergency aesculapian services .


An angiogram can show doctors what ‘s wrong with your blood vessels. It can :

  • Show how many of your coronary arteries are blocked or narrowed by fatty plaques (atherosclerosis)
  • Pinpoint where blockages are located in your blood vessels
  • Show how much blood flow is blocked through your blood vessels
  • Check the results of previous coronary bypass surgery
  • Check the blood flow through your heart and blood vessels

Knowing this data can help your doctor determine what treatment is best for you and how much danger your heart condition poses to your health. Based on your results, your doctor may decide, for case, that you would benefit from having coronary angioplasty or stenting to help clear clogged arteries. It ‘s besides potential that angioplasty or stenting could be done during your angiogram to avoid needing another procedure .

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