- A CT scan for coronary calcium scoring is a non-invasive way of obtaining information about the presence, location and extent of calcified plaque in the coronary arteries—the vessels that supply blood to the heart. Calcified plaque results when there is a build-up of fat and other substances under the inner layer of the artery. People with this disease have an increased risk for heart attacks.
Get answers to some of the most common questions about calcium scoring.
WHY SHOULD I CONSIDER OBTAINING MY CORONARY CALCIUM SCORE?
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in both men and women in America, but it is largely preventable. If detected early, it can be stopped or reversed. Coronary Calcium screenings determine your risk for coronary vascular disease. Cardiac screenings are of particular importance to patients with multiple risk factors for heart disease such as: family history of heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, smoking, lack of exercise, poor diet, and a high-stress lifestyle.
HOW IS MY CORONARY CALCIUM SCORE OBTAINED?
You will be positioned comfortably on your back on the CT examination table. Electrodes (small, sticky discs) will be attached to your chest and to an electrocardiograph (ECG) machine that records the electrical activity of the heart. This makes it possible to record CT scans when the heart is in the resting phase to minimize motion. The table moves smoothly through the scanner to acquire images of the heart and coronary arteries. You will be asked to hold your breath for a period of 10 to 20 seconds while images are recorded. The total time for the procedure is 10-15 minutes. Patients can resume normal activities immediately after the procedure. CT Coronary Calcium Scoring is not covered by many insurance plans. Call your carrier for verification of coverage. We are happy to assist patients with appropriate payment options for this procedure. We accept payment at the time of service or payment arrangements can be made through Imaging Associates before scheduling the procedure.
HOW DO I GET THE RESULTS?
A final report, produced by one of Alaska Radiology Associate’s local specialized radiologists, will be available for most exams within two hours. Questions about your results should be directed to your referring health care provider. For any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us directly.
WHO DO I CONTACT WITH QUESTIONS?
Questions about the results of your exam should be directed to your primary health care provider. For any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us directly.