Computerized Tomographic Angiography (CTA) shows clarity of blood vessels, differentiation between arteries and veins, and, unlike MRA imaging, CTA can capture evidence of calcium deposits. This pioneering technology replaces often-inaccurate stress testing and potentially dangerous catheterization.
What is CT Angiography?
CT Angiography, or CTA, is an examination that combines the use of x-rays with computerized analysis to visualize blood flow in blood vessels throughout the body, from arteries serving the brain to those bringing blood to the lungs, kidneys, arms and legs. From several different angles, x-ray beams pass from a rotating device through the area being studied in the patient’s body to create cross-sectional images. The latter are then assembled by computer into a 3D picture.
CTA is commonly used to:
- Examine the pulmonary arteries in the lungs to rule out pulmonary embolism: a serious but treatable condition
- Visualize blood flow in veins and arteries throughout the body
- Visualize blood flow specifically in the renal arteries in patients with high blood pressure and those suspected of having kidney disorders
- Identify aneurysms in the aorta or in other major blood vessels and identify dissection in the aorta or its major branches
- Identify a small aneurysm or arterio-venous malformation inside the brain that may be life-threatening
- Detect atherosclerotic disease that has narrowed the arteries to the legs
- Detect narrowing or obstruction of arteries in the carotid arteries bringing blood from the heart to the brain
For more information on this topic, please visit radiologyinfo.org CT Angiography (CTA)