Cardiac Markers (HsCRP, Apolipoprotein, Homocysteine)
Cardiac markers are biomarkers measured to evaluate heart function. They are often discussed in the context of myocardial infarction, but other conditions can lead to an elevation in cardiac marker level.
The hsCRP test is a highly sensitive quantification of CRP, an acute-phase protein released into the blood by the liver during inflammation, which has been associated with the presence of heart disease.
Homocysteine is a common amino acid in your blood. You get it mostly from eating meat. High levels of it are linked to early development of heart disease.
A stress test can determine if you have heart disease. A doctor or trained technician performs the test. He’ll learn how much your heartcan manage before an abnormal rhythm starts or blood flow to your heart muscle drops.
There are different types of these. The exercise stress test -- also known as an exercise electrocardiogram, treadmill test, graded exercise test, or stress EKG -- is used most often. It lets your doctor know how your heart responds to being pushed. You’ll walk on a treadmill or pedal a stationary bike. It’ll get more difficult as you go. Your electrocardiogram, heart rate, and blood pressure will be tracked throughout.
What is Cardiac CT for Calcium Scoring?
Computed tomography, more commonly known as a CT or CAT scan, is a diagnostic medical test that, like traditional x-rays, produces multiple images or pictures of the inside of the body.
The cross-sectional images generated during a CT scan can be reformatted in multiple planes, and can even generate three-dimensional images. These images can be viewed on a computer monitor, printed on film or transferred to a CD or DVD.
CT images of internal organs, bones, soft tissue and blood vessels provide greater detail than traditional x-rays, particularly of soft tissues and blood vessels.
A cardiac CT scan for coronary calcium is a non-invasive way of obtaining information about the presence, location and extent of calcified plaque in the coronary arteries—the vessels that supply oxygen-containing blood to the heart muscle. Calcified plaque results when there is a build-up of fat and other substances under the inner layer of the artery. This material can calcify which signals the presence of atherosclerosis, a disease of the vessel wall, also called coronary artery disease (CAD). People with this disease have an increased risk for heart attacks. In addition, over time, progression of plaque build up (CAD) can narrow the arteries or even close off blood flow to the heart. The result may be chest pain, sometimes called "angina," or a heart attack.
Because calcium is a marker of CAD, the amount of calcium detected on a cardiac CT scan is a helpful prognostic tool. The findings on cardiac CT are expressed as a calcium score. Another name for this test is coronary artery calcium scoring.
Basic Heart Scan, Stroke, Hypertension
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