How you prepareBy Mayo Clinic staff
In some cases, coronary angiograms are performed on an emergency basis. More commonly, though, they're scheduled in advance, giving you time to prepare.
Angiograms are performed in the catheterization (cath) lab of a hospital. Usually you go to the hospital the morning of the procedure. Your health care team will give you specific instructions and talk to you about any medications you take. General guidelines include:
- Don't eat or drink anything after midnight the day before your angiogram. Angiograms are often scheduled during the morning hours.
- Take all your medications to the hospital with you — in their original bottles. Ask your doctor about whether or not to take your usual morning medications.
- If you have diabetes, ask your doctor if you should take insulin or other oral medications before your angiogram.
Before your angiogram procedure starts, your health care team should review your medical history, including allergies and medications you take. The team may perform a physical exam and check your vital signs — blood pressure and pulse. You empty your bladder and change into a hospital gown. You may have to remove contact lenses, eyeglasses, jewelry and hairpins.
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- Cardiac catheterization. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/cath/cath_all.html. Accessed Dec. 14, 2010.
- Coronary angiography. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/ca/ca_all.html. Accessed Dec. 14, 2010.
- Kern MJ, et al. Physiological assessment of coronary artery disease in the cardiac catheterization laboratory: A scientific statement from the American Heart Association Committee on Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiac Catheterization, Council on Clinical Cardiology. Circulation. 2006;114:1321.