A life-saving test, in just minutes:
Know your risk for heart disease with a coronary calcium scan
Each year, more than 500,000 Americans have a fatal heart attack and almost 300,000 of them have no prior warning. The good news is that 85 percent of heart disease can be halted or prevented if your risk is identified early enough.
Even if you have no symptoms of heart disease, you should consider a heart scan if you are a man over age 40, or a woman over age 45, and:
- Have a family history of heart disease
- Have high cholesterol
- Have high blood pressure
- Are overweight
- Are physically inactive
- Are a smoker
- Have a high level of stress
A heart scan uses an ultrafast spiral computed tomography (CT) scanner to detect the presence of calcified (hard) plaque in your coronary arteries. When calcified plaque builds up in your arteries, they narrow, reducing the flow of blood and oxygen to your heart. This is known as coronary artery disease or hardening of the arteries. When a coronary artery becomes completely blocked, a heart attack occurs. Knowing the amount of calcified plaque in your arteries will help you make the right decisions about your health care.