Why is a cardiac catheterization used?

There are a few reasons why you may need a cardiac catheterization. You may have had shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness, or irregular heartbeats. You may have had no symptoms, but your doctor may have detected other signs of heart problems. Some patients may need to check on how well the heart is pumping and how well the valves are opening and closing. Cardiac catheterization is a test that finds these heart problems.
Below are uses for cardiac catheterization:
  • Cardiac catheterization gives your healthcare providers detailed information about your heart. It is used to evaluate problems that keep the heart from functioning well, such as heart failure or valve disease. It is also used to diagnose coronary artery disease (CAD) -- a narrowing of the arteries that supply blood and oxygen to the heart.
  • Cardiac catheterization can help your doctor diagnose and prevent problems. For example, if you have CAD, you might experience shortness of breath or angina (chest discomfort), especially when you exercise. However, many people don't experience symptoms until the arteries are completely blocked. Angiography helps your doctor diagnose the problem so it can be treated before it causes any more damage.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.