An angiogram or arteriogram is a procedure that uses contrast dye to take an X-ray of the blood vessels.
What Are Angiograms Used For?
Angiograms can help our doctors identify issues in your blood vessels, including conditions affecting your brain, heart, or extremities. For example, vascular stenosis and aneurysms are two common conditions that can be diagnosed with an angiogram.
How Is An Angiogram Performed?
During an angiogram, your doctor will administer local anesthesia and gently insert a catheter into one of your arteries. Following that, a small amount of contrast dye will be injected into the catheter, and your doctor will take some X-rays of your body. The dye will provide enough contrast for your doctor to more clearly see your blood vessels, as well as any blockages or other issues.
What To Expect After Your Angiogram
Angiograms are considered generally safe, with serious complications being uncommon. Having said that, it is still important to follow all of the post-care instructions provided by your doctor.
Get as much rest as possible, and follow these general guidelines:
- Drink plenty of water.
- Avoid strenuous physical activity for at least a few days.
- Change your bandage regularly (or as instructed by your physician).
- Keep the wound as clean and dry as possible.
- Avoid taking baths or using swimming pools or hot tubs while your wound heals.