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Cardiac Catheterization or Coronary Angiogram Baytown

A coronary angiogram is a test that uses x-ray imaging and contrast dye to view the coronary arteries, the blood vessels that deliver blood to the muscle of the heart.

During this procedure, a guidewire is carefully inserted into the femoral artery through a small incision in the patientís upper thigh. This wire is then guided up into the heart. A long, thin, tube with a specialized tip, called a cardiac catheter, is then inserted along the guidewire into the heart . The guidewire is removed and then the catheter is positioned in the opening of a coronary artery.

A contrast dye visible in X-rays is injected through the catheter. Blockages in the artery show up as areas of narrowing.

Results from a coronary angiogram help determine whether treatment with medicines, bypass surgery or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), such as angioplasty with or without coronary stents, may be effective.

The catheter is removed from the body when the procedure is finished.

Usually, you will be asked not to eat or drink anything for six to eight hours before the cath procedure.

Tell your doctor about any medicines (including over-the-counter, herbs and vitamins) you take. The doctor may ask you not to take them before your cath procedure. Donít stop taking your medicine until your doctor tells you to.

Tell your doctor or nurse if you are allergic to anything, especially iodine, shellfish, latex or rubber products, medicines like penicillin, or X-ray dye.

Arrange to have someone drive you home after your procedure.

If you usually wear a hearing aid, wear it during your procedure. If you wear glasses, bring them to your appointment.

Contact Houston Cardiovascular Institute

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