What is Calcium Scoring?
A calcium scoring screening test for the heart uses computerized tomography (CT) to detect calcium deposits in the heart's arteries. A high risk of calcium deposits means an increased risk of narrowing of the coronary arteries which in turn increases your risk of a heart attack. A person between the age of 40-70 years should get this test as they are at a higher rate of heart disease because of family history, overweight, inactive lifestyle etc., even if you have no symptoms.
Calcium scores can range between 0 to 400. This range along with other factors like race, diabetes, etc., is considered to determine the risk of heart disease. The radiation exposure is low, and no dye is used; hence, there are few risks involved.
Why is Calcium Scoring done?
- • To determine the presence of blockages or narrowing of the coronary arteries due to calcified deposition of plaque on their inner walls • To screen for atherosclerosis and risk of development of a heart attack in people with high risk factors like diabetes, obesity, hypertension, high cholesterol, smoking, little physical activity or family history of heart conditions