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Chest CT Angiogram (Pulmonary and Aortic) - About the Exam

Chest CT angiography (CTA) can identify pulmonary and aortic blockage problems.

What you can expect during a chest CTA:

  • You will be asked to lie on the examination table.
  • If contrast is used, an automatic injection pump connected to the IV will give contrast material at a controlled rate.
  • The table will start moving, first slowly and then relatively more rapidly when the actual CT is performed.
  • The technologist will give you specific breathing instructions for the exam. You may be asked to hold your breath during the scanning. Any motion, whether breathing or body movements, can lead to artifacts on the images.
  • The entire CT angiography exam may be completed within a few seconds. Your actual time in the room will be longer as the technologist will have to position you on the table, check or place an IV line, do preliminary imaging to verify the beginning and end points of the exam, and set up the scan and contrast injection settings based on the part of the body being imaged.

Learn how to prepare for a chest CTA.

Learn the benefits and risks of chest CTA.

Watch the CT - What to Expect Video.