Coronary Angiography

A material called plaCoronary angiography (an-jee-OG-ra-fee) is a test that uses dye and special x rays to show the inside of your coronary arteries. The coronary arteries supply oxygen-rich blood to your heart.que (plak) can build up on the inside walls of the coronary arteries, causing them to narrow. When this happens, it’s called coronary heart disease (CHD) or coronary artery disease.

CHD can prevent enough blood from flowing to your heart and can lead to angina(an-JI-nuh or AN-juh-nuh) and heart attack. (Angina is chest pain or discomfort.) Coronary angiography shows whether you have CHD.

Most of the time, the coronary arteries can’t be seen on an x ray. During coronary angiography, special dye is injected into the bloodstream to make the coronary arteries show up on an x ray.

A procedure called cardiac catheterization (KATH-e-ter-i-ZA-shun) is used to get the dye to your coronary arteries. A long, thin, flexible tube called a catheter is put into a blood vessel in your arm, groin (upper thigh), or neck.

The tube is then threaded into your coronary arteries, and the dye is injected into your bloodstream. Special x rays are taken while the dye is flowing through the coronary arteries.

Cardiologists (heart specialists) usually do cardiac catheterization in a hospital. You’re awake during the procedure. It usually causes little to no pain, although you may feel some soreness in the blood vessel where your doctor put the catheter. Cardiac catheterization rarely causes serious complications.