CT angiography - arms and legs

Introduction to CT Angiography of Arms and Legs

CT Angiography (also known as Computed Tomography Angiography or CTA) is a nonsurgical, imaging technique used to diagnose diseases of the circulatory system. It is used to visualize the arteries and veins throughout the body, such as the arms, legs, brain, chest, neck, and abdomen. It can be used to detect a number of diseases that affect the circulatory system, such as cardiovascular disease, aneurysms, and blood clots.

Preparation for CT Angiography of Arms and Legs

Before having CT angiography, the patient needs to fast for at least four hours. Additionally, contrast dye is needed, and the patient will need to drink a solution containing the dye an hour before the procedure. Patients should also inform their doctors of any allergies they may have.

Proceudure for CT Angiography of Arms and Legs

During the procedure, the patient lies on a table that slides into the scanner. The scanner acquires multiple images that are pieced together to form an image. The patient is monitored by medical staff during the procedure. After the relevant images have been acquired, the patient is asked to wait while the images are processed. It takes about 20 minutes to process the images. After processing, the patient will be given the results.

Types of CT Angiography

There are several types of CT angiography exams. Depending on the type of exam, different parts of the body can be examined. Below are the most common types of CT angiography exams:

  • CT Coronary Angiography – examines the arteries that supply blood to the heart
  • CT Cerebral Angiography – examines the blood vessels in the brain
  • CT Peripheral Angiography – examines the blood vessels in the arms, legs, and abdomen
  • CT Pulmonary Angiography – examines the blood vessels in the lungs

Potential Risks for CT Angiography of Arms and Legs

CT angiography is generally a safe procedure, with few risks. However, there is a risk associated with contrast dye, which can cause an allergic reaction or kidney damage. Additionally, it is important to note that radiation is used, so it is not recommended for pregnant patients, as radiation can be harmful to unborn babies.

Why CT Angiography of Arms and Legs?

CT angiography is a useful tool for diagnosing diseases in the circulatory system. It can detect narrowing, blockages, and abnormalities in the blood vessels. It can also detect the presence of blood clots, aneurysms, stenosis, and tumors. As the results are often immediate, it can allow doctors to make quick decisions about further tests or treatments.

When Should a CT Angiography of Arms and Legs Be Performed?

CT angiography is usually recommended when a patient is showing signs of a circulatory system problem. It can also be used to monitor established diseases and conditions. It is usually recommended by a Medical Doctor and Imaging Technician or Radiologist.