When a cardiologist or heart specialist needs to examine the coronary arteries of a patient’s heart, they’ll perform a coronary angiogram.
Coronary Angiography is one of the most common types of angiogram performed, and is done so under localized anesthetic with very little downtime for the patient.
Coronary angiography is a medical technique that utilizes medical imaging to examine the blood vessels and internal organs of the patient’s body. It gives doctors a clear view of the heart chambers, veins and arteries so that any blockages can be spotted. X-ray is used alongside a contrast dye that is injected into the bloodstream. The dye highlights the blood vessels and the X ray will take images. Cardiologists can then examine the images and determine whether there are any blockages that need to be opened up.
If there isn’t then the patient is free to go. If blockages are spotted, the patient will be given a series of treatment options and recommendations to remove them.
Here are 5 facts about coronary angiography that every patient should know:
We have already mentioned that coronary angiograms are needed to spot blockages. But there are many signs and symptoms that can occur in the patient that indicate one is necessary. These are:
If you have any of these symptoms, you should book an appointment with the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center.
It only takes 30 to 60 minutes to have angiography performed. The length of time normally depends on how complex the procedure is. Normally, only local anesthesia is required to perform the angiography. But in some cases, sedatives may also be given. If this is the case, you may need to stay in the clinic for a couple of hours after the procedure has finished to be monitored.
Cardiologists are fully trained and licensed doctors who have completed extra training in matters relating to the heart and vascular system. A coronary angiogram can only be performed by an experienced cardiologist. You will also be seen by a radiographer, who takes the medical imaging with the X ray. A nurse practitioner will be present to help monitor you.
When you go for coronary angiography, you’ll be taken to a catheterization laboratory, otherwise known as a cath lab.
A cath-lab looks very similar to an operating theater, with a few differences. It is a lab within the clinic that has all the imaging equipment needed to carry out the coronary angiography. There are two types of procedure that might be performed.
Your cardiologist will explain which procedure you need and why.
There is no such thing as a 100% risk free medical intervention or procedure. In the case of a coronary angiography, you can expect the procedure to be extremely safe, but there are some risks worth noting.
Your cardiologist will explain the risks to you in more detail and answer any questions you have. What is important to remember is that these procedures are performed all the time and complications are extremely rare.
You will be asked in advance of your coronary angiography to do the following:
A coronary angiography is a safe, effective and regularly performed procedure that can give you and your cardiologist a clearer view of your heart health. Furthermore, the procedure involves very little downtime and can be done on an outpatient basis. If you’d like to learn more about accessing a coronary angiography, talk to us.
As some of the best cardiologists in Singapore, we are highly skilled in performing a coronary angiography. If you think you have a heart condition, or have a family history of heart problems, you should book an appointment to see us. We can invite you to a thorough cardiac consultation, take an in-depth medical and family history and recommend tests and treatments accordingly, including a coronary angiography.