CT Coronary angiography (CTCA)

A CT coronary angiogram (CTCA) is performed by placing the patient into a CT scanner and injecting intravenous contrast, or dye, into a vein in the hand or arm to visualise the coronary arteries. Depending on the risk profile and cardiac history of the patient, this test can be performed either non-invasively, using a cardiac CT scan, or invasively by a cardiologist.

A CT coronary angiogram (CTCA)is performed by placing the patient into a CT scanner and injecting intravenous contrast, or dye, into a vein in the hand or arm to visualise the coronary arteries. In order to achieve optimal pictures, the heart rate sometimes needs to be lowered with drugs such beta-blockers.

The acquired CT data is then analysed to produce a coronary calcium score and, with 3D reconstruction, to determine whether there are any significant coronary artery narrowing’s known as stenoses. If a significant stenosis is suspected, further investigation may be required including ‘functional’ tests for ischaemia, such as a dobutamine stress echocardiogram (DSE), nuclear myocardial perfusion scan (MPS), or direct to invasive coronary angiography.