Aortic angiography

Aortic angiography. A procedure that uses a special dye and x-rays to see how blood flows through the aorta, the major artery that leaves the heart through the abdomen.
An angiography is an imaging test that uses x-rays and a special dye to see the inside of the arteries. Arteries are the blood vessels that carry blood from the heart .


[ hide ]

  • 1 How the test is performed
  • 2 Preparation for the exam
  • 3 How the test will feel
  • 4 Reasons why the exam is performed
  • 5 Meaning of abnormal results
  • 6 What are the risks
  • 7 Special considerations
  • 8 Alternative names
  • 9 Source

How the test is performed

The examination is performed in a special unit in the hospital. Before the exam begins, a mild sedative is applied to help you relax.

  • An area of ​​the body, usually the arm or groin, is cleaned and made numb with local anesthesia .
  • radiologistor cardiologist will put a needle into a blood vessel in the groin. A guidewire and a long probe (catheter) will be passed through this needle.
  • The catheter is carefully passed into the aorta. The doctor can view live images of the aorta on a television monitor and use x-rays to guide the catheter to the correct position.
  • Once the catheter is in place, the dye (contrast material) is injected. X-rays are taken to see how the dye moves through the artery. The dye helps highlight any blockages in blood flow.

After taking the x-rays or finishing the treatments, the catheter is removed. Pressure is immediately applied to the puncture site for 20 to 45 minutes to stop the bleeding. After that time, the area is checked and a tight bandage is applied. The leg is usually kept straight for another 6 hours after the procedure.

Preparation for the exam

A patient is asked not to eat or drink anything 6 to 8 hours before the exam. The patient is asked to wear a hospital gown and sign an authorization for the procedure. Remove jewelry from the area to be examined.
The patient should comment to the doctor:

  • If you are pregnant.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to x-ray contrast material or iodine.
  • If you are allergic to any medications.
  • What medications are you taking (including any herbal preparations).
  • If you have ever had a bleeding problem.

How the test will feel

The patient will be awake during the exam and may feel a sting as anesthesia is applied and some pressure as the catheter is inserted. You can also feel suffocating heat when the contrast medium flows through the catheter. This is normal and usually goes away after a few seconds.
You may feel somewhat uncomfortable from sitting still on the hospital table for an extended period of time. Generally, the patient can resume normal activity the day after the procedure.

Reasons why the exam is performed

Your doctor may order this test if there are signs or symptoms of a problem with the aorta or its ramifications, including:

  • Aortic aneurysm.
  • Aortic dissection
    • congenital problems (present from birth);
    • arteriovenous malformations;
    • double aortic arch;
    • coarctation of the aorta;
    • vascular ring.
  • Injury to the aorta.
  • Takayasu’s arteritis.

Meaning of abnormal results

Abnormal results may be due to:

  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm.
  • Aortic dissection.
  • Aortic regurgitation.
  • Aortic stenosis.
  • Congenital problems (present from birth)
    • double aortic arch;
    • coarctation of the aorta;
    • vascular ring.
  • Injury to the aorta.
  • Mesenteric ischemia.
  • Peripheral arteriopathy.
  • Renal artery stenosis.
  • Takayasu’s arteritis.

What are the risks

The risks of aortic angiography include:

  • Allergic reaction to contrast medium.
  • Blockage of the artery.
  • Blood clot that travels to the lungs.
  • Hematomaat the catheter insertion site.
  • Damage to the blood vessel where the needle and catheter were inserted.
  • Excessive bleeding or a blood clotwhere the catheter is inserted, which can reduce circulation to the leg.
  • Heart attackor stroke .
  • Hematoma (a collection of blood at the site of the needle piercing).
  • Nerve injury at the puncturesite .
  • Kidney damage from the contrast medium.

Special considerations

This procedure can be combined with left heart catheterization to look for coronary artery disease. Aortic angiography has been largely replaced by computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance angiography (MRI).

Alternative names

Angiography of the aorta; Aortography; Angiography of the abdominal aorta; Arteriography of the aorta


Leave a Comment