If you have high cholesterol, a heart CT scan provides a quick and convenient way to determine your risk of atherosclerosis (the buildup of fat in your artery walls). At Heart Care Centers of Florida, the experienced providers offer heart CT scans to catch potentially serious cardiovascular issues early on when they’re easiest to treat. To make an appointment at the practice in Titusville, New Smyrna Beach, or Merritt Island, Florida, call the nearest office or click the online booking feature today.
A heart CT scan, or calcium-score screening heart scan, is a diagnostic imaging procedure that looks for calcium deposits in your heart muscle. The more calcium inside your heart, the more likely you are to experience a potentially serious issue like a heart attack or a stroke.
Calcium buildup doesn’t always present obvious symptoms, so you might be at risk and not realize it. A heart CT scan can detect the issue early on, empowering you to take action.
Preparing for a heart CT scan is easy. Continue to take your medications, supplements, and vitamins as prescribed. Don’t drink caffeine or use tobacco products for four hours before your procedure.
If you’re currently pregnant or are trying to get pregnant, let your provider know. CT scans use X-rays, so they might recommend a different procedure that doesn’t expose you to radiation.
Heart Care Centers of Florida conducts heart CT scans on-site in their state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging facility.
On the day of your scan, you change into a hospital gown and sit down on an exam table. Your provider attaches three small electrodes to your chest and injects a contrast dye into your veins, making your scans easier to read.
After receiving the dye, you lie down on your back. Then, your provider positions the computed tomography scanner over your body and takes a series of three-dimensional scans.
Your scans are uploaded to a computer program that your provider uses to find calcium buildup. If your heart is healthy and calcium-free, you receive a negative result. If there’s calcium present, the software program runs a calculation to determine the severity, and your provider diagnoses you with coronary artery disease.
If your heart CT scan confirms that you’re at risk of heart disease, your Heart Care Centers of Florida provider develops a custom treatment plan. Usually, that includes a combination of healthy lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, quitting smoking, and exercising regularly.
If conservative measures don’t ease your symptoms, more extensive treatments might be necessary, like prescription medication or surgery.
To see if you can benefit from a heart CT scan, make an appointment at Heart Care Centers of Florida by calling the nearest office or clicking the online scheduling feature today.