Preparation Instructions for Coronary CTA

Prior to the study:

  • Patient should not consume any form of caffeine 12-hous prior to the study.
  • Patient should not eat solid foods 4-hours prior to the study.
  • Patient is asked to drink two 8-ouce glasses of water 1-hour prior to the study.
  • Patient should continue taking all prescribed medications. There is no need to alter typical medication routine.
  • Patient should take 50-100 mg. of Metroprolol* orally 1-hour prior to the beta-blocker used to ensure the patient's heart-rate reaches an ideal 60-bmp or less. THE PATIENT SHOULD NOT TAKE THE BETA-BLOCKER UNTIL ARRIVING FOR THE STUDY- PATIENT IS TO ARRIVE ONE HOUR PRIOR TO SCHEDULED STUDY.
      • If patient already takes a beta-blocker at home, and the HR is consistently below 60-bpm during a few minutes of observation, then we proceed with the scan.
      • If the HR is consistently 55-60-bpm and the patient has never been exposed to beta-blockers then we give 5mg IV - it's important to have some on board to blunt any reflexive HR increase during contrast injection.
      • If the HR is consistently <55 (i.e., truly bradycardic), then the HR usually doesn't alter significantly during injection, therefore we proceed.
      • Summary: a) goal HR 60-bpm or less, and b) always "some beta-blocker (even just 5-mg) on board, unless the patient is naturally "really" slow (i.e., HR <55).

During the Study

  • Patient will have contrast (x-ray) dye for this study. A needle will be placed in the left arm around the elbow area.
  • Patient will have a 4-lead EKG attached to monitor his/her heart rate.
  • Patient may be given oxygen via nasal canula (oxygen tube under his/her nose), to help with his/her "breath-hold" during the study. This is dependent upon the length required for patients's breath-hold.
  • Patient will receive one squirt of nitroglycerine during his/her exam (under the tongue)**

Following the Study:

  • Patient is advised to eat and drink plenty of fluids after the study.

*At the discretion of patients referring physician.
**Unless contraindicated.





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