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Cardiac CT for Calcium Scoring

What is CT Scanning ?

CT scanning—sometimes called Computed Tomography or CAT scanning—is a noninvasive medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions.

CT scanning combines special x-ray equipment with sophisticated computers to produce multiple images or pictures of the inside of the body. These cross-sectional images of the area being studied can then be examined on a computer monitor, printed or transferred to a CD.

CT scans of internal organs, bones, soft tissue and blood vessels provide greater clarity and reveal more details than regular x-ray exams

Why should I do it?

The goal of cardiac CT scan for calcium scoring is to determine if CAD is present and to what extent, even if there are no symptoms. It is a screening study that may be recommended by a physician for patients with risk factors for CAD but no clinical symptoms.

Any preparations needed?

  • You should wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing to your exam.
  • Metal objects, including jewelry, eyeglasses, dentures and hairpins should be left at home or removed prior to your exam. You may also be asked to remove hearing aids and removable dental work. Women will be asked to remove bras containing metal underwire. You may be asked to remove any piercings, if possible.
  • You should inform the technologist if you have a pacemaker.
  • You may be asked not to eat or drink anything for a few hours beforehand, especially if a contrast material will be used in your exam.
  • You should inform your physician of all medications you are taking and if you have any allergies.
  • Inform your doctor of any recent illnesses or other medical conditions and whether you have a history of heart disease, asthma, diabetes, kidney disease or thyroid problems.
  • Women should always inform their physician and the CT technologist if there is any possibility that they may be pregnant.
  • You should continue to take your usual medications, but should avoid caffeine and smoking for four make it a black bullet point hours prior to the exam.