Anne Arundel Medical Center


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Diagnostic Tests for Coronary Artery Disease

Many tests help to diagnose Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). Usually, your doctor will order more than one test before making a definite diagnosis.
Tests May Include:

When your heart is beating fast and working hard, it needs more blood and oxygen. Arteries narrowed by plaque can’t supply enough oxygen-rich blood to meet your heart’s needs. A stress test can show possible signs of CAD, such as:

During the stress test, if you can’t exercise for the time considered normal for someone your age, it may be a sign that not enough blood is flowing to your heart. But other factors besides CAD can also prevent you from exercising effectively (for example, lung disease, anemia, or poor general fitness).

This test can also identify areas of poor blood flow to the heart, areas of heart muscle that are not contracting normally, and previous injury to the heart muscle caused by poor blood flow.



To get the dye into the coronary arteries, a long, thin, flexible tube called a catheter is put into a blood vessel in your arm, groin, or neck. This tube is then threaded into your coronary arteries, and the dye is released into your bloodstream. Special x-rays are taken while they dye is flowing through your coronary arteries.