CT Scan Coronary Arteries

Please report to admitting 15 minutes before scheduled exam time.

PREP: Do not eat 4 hrs before exam. Your may drink clear liquids up to 2 hrs before exam. On the day before the exam, avoid:

  • caffeinated drinks
  • diet pills
  • Viagra or similar medications. It is not compatible with medications you will receive during the exam.


PURPOSE: CCTA is done to study the coronary arteries for any blockage and also look other structures of the heart.

WHAT TO EXPECT: You will be asked to be in the Radiology Department 90 minutes before the exam will be done. You will have blood work done. An IV will be started and you will be given oral beta blockers 1 hour before the exam to lower your heart rate. After one hour, you will be taken to the CT room where you will be hooked to a heart monitor. If needed, additional beta blockers will be given to lower your heart rate to 60 beats per minute or lower.

From this point, it is very important to lie still on the CT bed. Any motion can make the exam non-diagnostic.

A preliminary scan will be done to check for calcium on the coronaries-Calcium Scoring. You will then be given oral nitro- glycerin. IV contrast will be injected to highlight the vessels of the chest, and an angiogram will be done of the coronary arteries. You will be monitored by a nurse for 10-15 minutes and then the IV will be removed and you will be discharged.

TIME FRAME: 90 minutes from the time you arrive in admitting, until you are discharged.

POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS: Temporary warm feeling, metallic taste, headaches,and rare cases of nausea.

COMPLICATIONS: Hives and difficulty breathing, although rare, are possible.

IF YOU ARE PREGNANT, PLEASE INFORM THE NURSE OR TECHNOLOGIST BEFORE THE EXAM!