This is an invasive imaging procedure, used to:
- Evaluate the presence of disease in the coronary arteries, valves or aorta.
- Evaluate heart muscle function.
- Determine the need for further treatment.
It is performed in the Cardiac Catheterisation Laboratory (Cath Lab) by a Cardiologist and cardiac team. It takes approximately 30 minutes and is classified as a Day Case procedure. The patient is given local anaesthetic and a mild sedative and remains conscious throughout.
A catheter is then inserted into a blood vessel in the arm or leg. With the aid of x-ray equipment it is then guided through the blood vessel to the coronary arteries. A contrast substance is injected through the catheter and moving images taken as the contrast spreads through the heart’s arteries, valves and chambers. These are used to show any site where the coronary artery may be narrowed or blocked. Heart and valve function can be measured.