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Maple Grove Voice

CT Calcium Scoring: A Powerful Predictor of Future Heart Disease (Sponsored)

Mar 28, 2016 05:12PM ● By Maple Grove Hospital

(photo provided by Maple Grove Hospital)

The following information was provided and sponsored by Maple Grove Hospital. 

Each year, the number one cause of death in the United States is coronary artery disease. In many cases, there are no symptoms or prior heart problems.

Numerous risk factors exist for heart disease including cholesterol level, blood pressure, smoking, and family history. However, research increasingly suggests that there is a direct link between the amount of calcium buildup in your arteries and the likelihood of a heart attack or stroke. CT Calcium Scoring uses high-resolution CT scanning technology to detect and highlight calcification. It is a simple, non-invasive test that can identify early heart disease. 

Who Benefits from CT Calcium Scoring?

The CT Calcium Scoring may be beneficial for you if you are male, age 35-70, or a female, age 40-70, and you have any of the following risk factors:

  • Diabetes
  • Family history of heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Overweight
  • Smoking 

During a CT Calcium Scoring Test

EKG leads will be placed on your chest and then you will lie down on the bed of the CT scanner. Your heart rate will be monitored and you will be asked to hold your breath for a short period of time while the scan takes place. A high-resolution CT scanner takes dozens of cross-sectional photos of your heart. If calcium is detected in your coronary arteries, the arteries, the volume and density is measured and a score is assigned. The entire procedure takes less than 30 minutes. In about one week you will receive a report in the mail explaining how you scored. You will be told how you fit into various age and risk profiles and whether you have any likelihood of obstructive artery disease.

Scheduling an Exam

You may contact Maple Grove Hospital directly to schedule a CT Calcium Scoring exam. You are encouraged to consult your physician when making any decision concerning medical testing. The CT Calcium Scoring cost is $150. Payment is required at the time of your appointment. Call 763-581-1330 to schedule an appointment. CT Calcium Scoring is just one tool in diagnosing your likelihood of a heart attack or stroke. The results of this test will help you and your physician develop a plan that is right for you. 

If you are currently under a physician’s care for cardiac-related illness or have a history of coronary artery disease, this test may not be appropriate. If you are unsure, talk to your doctor; or call Maple Grove Hospital at 763-581-1330.

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