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Do MRI or CT Scans detect carotid artery blockages? My 40 year old husband was hospitalized after tingling in his left lip, lightheadedness, slight heaviness of his left arm and also indicated that when he spoke his tongue felt like when you chew on a lot of ice. All tests (CT Scan, MRI, EKG and blood tests) were normal and the only diagnosis based on his symptoms was TIA. It has been a week since he was discharged and he is still feeling slight discomfort in his left arm and says that his vision isn't blurry but his perception isn't right. I'm wondering if he doesn't have a blockage in his carotid arteries or would the MRI or CT Scan have shown a blockage is there was one? Thanks in advance for your help!
Characteristics of a transient ischemic attack include its rapid onset, short duration and your body's return to its normal state. Your doctor may diagnose a TIA based just on the medical history of the event rather than on anything found during a general physical and neurological examination.
Computerized tomography (CT) scanning. CT scanning of your head uses X-ray beams to assemble a composite, three-dimensional look at your brain.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This procedure, which uses a strong magnetic field, can generate a composite, three-dimensional view of your brain.
Other investigative tools include:
Computerized tomography angiography (CTA) scanning. Scanning of the head may also be used to noninvasively evaluate the arteries in your neck and brain. CTA scanning uses X-rays, similar to a standard CT scan of the head, but may also involve injection of a contrast material into a blood vessel.
Arteriography. This procedure gives a view of arteries in your brain not normally seen in X-ray imaging. A radiologist inserts a thin, flexible tube (catheter) through a small incision, usually in your groin. The catheter is manipulated through your major arteries and into your carotid or vertebral artery. Then, the radiologist injects a dye through the catheter to provide X-ray images of the arteries in your brain.
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