how do you test for plaque in the arteries? I've seen a cardiologist for a mild mvp with regurg that is now worse and I'm concerned about plaque since I have cholesterol of 262 and triglycrides of 233. If I see a cardiologist now...what test would be appropiate to determine heart plaque?
To the best of my knowledge, you would need an angiogram and/or catherization to determine the degree of plaque in your coronary arteries. I recently had a carotid artery ultrasound that was able to determine plaque levels in my carotid arteries. But, I've been told an echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) is not the proper test for assessing plaque of the coronary arteries.
Is your doctor working with you to lower your cholesterol and triglycerides? Has he/she mentioned the need for a more thorough examination of your coronary arteries?
Vessel occlusion can be identified by a CT angiogram or the invasive procedure by a cath angiogram. Neither test has 100% sensitivity rating, but quite good. Also an EKG can indicate ischemia (lack of blood flow to the heart) that may be due to a vessel blockage.
Usually, the tests aren't given unless there is chest pain, shortness of breath, etc., but if there is a family history of CAD and heart problems the testing for plague occluding vessels may be appropriate.
I know they found mine with a cardiac cath which I just had 1 week ago. My EKG was normal but blood pressure was high and have a family history of CAD. My cardiologist did a ultrasound of my heart in his office which showed the abnormality on my right side...then ordered a stress test which I failed and then I had the cath.
Are you having chest pain, heaviness, shortness of breath or any arm, jaw and back pain? If so then I would let your doctor know. Now here is what I think is strange.....my cholesterol was not high until after my stroke yet I have a 90 percent block in the right coronary. I think some people can have normal cholesterol levels as I asked my doctor this very question.
I do hope you find out but I would think they would need to do a stress test before ordering a cath or at least that is what I have been told.
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