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Saint Thomas Heart

Heart Imaging

Chest pains, shortness of breath and palpitations are indicators of possible heart disease. In the past, the initial course of diagnostic evaluation for cardiovascular disease would have been a treadmill stress test or a cardiac catheterization.

Today, the potential for non-invasive assessment of the heart has improved dramatically with the continued growth and development of cardiac computed tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), 3-dimensional echocardiography (3-D echo), and nuclear cardiac imaging.

The traditional stress test shows the heart's function and how it performs under exertion such as walking on a treadmill or pedaling a stationary bike. In cardiac catheterization, the cardiologist examines the valves, arteries, and chambers via the use of contrast dye and a catheter inserted into the groin or arm.

Non-Invasive Cardiac Assessment offers several advantages:

  • Less invasive
  • Complimentary assessment of cardiac anatomy and function
  • Potential for limited or no radiation exposure
  • Potential for avoidance of iodinated contrast materials
  • Quantification of cardiac valvular abnormalities

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