A blah! week since last Friday when mum was warded for unstable angina. She was discharged the next day. She has a heart condition brought on by hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol.
Took her to UMMC for a doctor's appointment yesterday and scheduled an angiogram in March. Here's some info on what an angiogram is all about. I've reproduced it here.
A coronary angiogram (or arteriogram) is an x-ray of the arteries located on the surface of the heart (the coronary arteries). It helps the physician to see if any of those arteries are blocked, usually by fatty plaque. If so, the patient An angiogram is an imaging test used to visualize the size, shape and location of blood vessels.may be diagnosed with coronary artery disease (CAD).
A coronary angiogram is often conducted along with other catheter–based tests as part of cardiac catheterization, which also includes measuring blood pressure, taking samples for blood tests, and a left ventriculogram.
During an angiogram, the physician injects a special dye (contrast medium) into the coronary arteries. To do that, the physician inserts a thin tube (catheter) through a blood vessel, usually in the upper thigh, and guides it all the way up to the heart. Once the catheter is in place, the physician can inject the dye through the catheter and into the coronary arteries. Then the x–ray can be taken.
Although the physician typically numbs the area where he or she inserts the catheter, the patient is awake for the entire procedure. The patient receives a mild sedative before the procedure and does not ordinarily feel the movement of the catheter within the blood vessels.Balloon angioplasty and stenting are procedures to increase blood flow through a narrowed artery.
Depending on what the angiogram shows, the physician may recommend treatments such as medication, a catheter-based procedure (e.g., balloon angioplasty, coronary stenting) or surgery (e.g., bypass surgery).
Here's a very detailed explanation on what happens during and after the angiogram.
We'll get a clear picture when the angiogram's done. Are there blockages in the arteries? If so, how many? She's a likely candidate for heart attack but she says her heart is okay. I hope her optimism is rewarded.
P/S : I know this sounds so clinical and cold but I'm not in the mood to write something emotional.