If you are referred to us from your Cardiologist/Internist, you will be placed
on our waiting list and called in to our admitting department. In most cases,
you will be required to be here early in the morning, and will be able to leave
the hospital later that same day.
Prior to Arrival
Prior to your arrival, your family physician will have sent you to a heart
specialist who has recommended you have a cardiac catheterization (angiogram).
Various diagnostic tests will have been done prior to your arrival at our lab.
You will be contacted by our secretary as to the date of your procedure, where
to go, what medications you can and cannot take, whether or not you can eat, and
what time to be here. An information package will be sent to you.
If you have a history of asthma or allergies to any type of dye used
in the examination of the kidneys or other arteries, tell the doctor before the
test and tell the secretary at the time you are booked for your procedure.
Precautions will be taken to prevent an allergic reaction.
Please let our
secretary know if you are taking coumadin or warfarin.
- Upon arrival at our hospital, you will be admitted. A nurse on the unit will
take a brief medical history and start an intravenous in your arm. A
cardiologist who will do your procedure will see you to obtain your consent for
this procedure, and answer your questions. You will be given a standard
medication to relax you and help prevent allergic reactions to our x-ray “dye”
- When our lab is available, our porter will bring you down on a stretcher.
Your family may accompany you down, however they are not allowed into the lab
area with you. There are waiting rooms available for your family.
- Sometimes your procedure may be delayed or cancelled and rebooked if someone
else arrives to us with a more urgent condition.
- For an angiogram, you will be required to lie flat on a hard, narrow x-ray
table. Your blood pressure and electrocardiogram (ECG) will be monitored, and
you will be covered with sterile blankets. Our doctors and technologists will
talk to you throughout the procedure. The procedure can take 30 minutes to 2
hours to complete.
- A small tube is placed in the artery under local anaesthetic (usually in your
groin), and a thin plastic tube is maneuvered up to your heart. X-ray contrast
is injected to highlight your arteries. Any blockages or narrowing in your
arteries, that may be causing your pain, can be seen. At one point in the
procedure, you may experience a very warm, flush feeling. This is normal. We are
testing the pumping action of your heart. This sensation should only last about
30 seconds, but you feel it all over your body.
After the Procedure
- When the procedure is over, the cardiologist will remove the tube from your
artery. We must control any bleeding, so he will apply pressure to the puncture
- You will be placed back on your stretcher and our porter will take you back
up to your room.
- You will be required to stay in bed, quite flat, resting quietly for 4 to 6
hours. During this period, you will be allowed to eat and drink.
- After the physician has been up to see you and discussed the results with
you, you will be discharged into the care of another adult. All patients are
asked to stay in the city overnight, in case bleeding problems occur after your