What is an Angiogram?

Angiograms really aren't too difficult to understand.


An Angiogram is an X-ray test that uses a special dye and camera (fluoroscopy) to take pictures of the blood flow in an artery (such as the aorta) or a vein.

An angiogram can be used to look at the arteries or veins nearly anywhere in the body, including the head, arms, legs, chest, back, or belly.

The blood vessels in an angiogram can be seen because you’ll receive an injection of dye to outline the vessels on the x-ray. Depending on the part of the body to be evaluated, angiograms can be either invasive or non-invasive.

angiogram reading in two views

Typically angiograms are done on a planned and outpatient basis, are recommended by a specialist, and can be performed in a clinic or hospital setting. The procedure takes a couple hours, and radiologists study the test as it is being performed in order to give you timely results once is completed.

In some cases, a method called interventional radiology may be used during an angiogram to treat certain conditions. This eliminates the need for multiple procedures. For example, a catheter can be used to open a blocked blood vessel, deliver medicine to a tumor, stop intestinal bleeding caused by a hemorrhage, or use coil embolization to treat some types of brain aneurysms.

Before your angiogram, your doctor may tell you about other treatments that could take place during your angiogram if the opportunity and/or need arise.


Heart 3D CAT two views

ABOVE: 3D cardiac CT.

Angiogram of liver two views

ABOVE: Hepatic angiogram of the liver.

Angiogram leg two views

ABOVE: Angiogram of the femoral arteries in leg.

Angiogram of pelvis two views

ABOVE: Angiogram of the femoral arteries in pelvis.

Arm angiogram in two views

ABOVE: Angiogram of the arm, specifically the axillary artery.


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IMPORTANT: The information on this page, and throughout the entire site, is not intended to provide advice or treatment for a specific situation. Consult your physician and medical team for information and treatment plans on your specific condition(s). Images are shown for illustrative purposes. Do not attempt to draw conclusions or make diagnoses by comparing these image to other medical images, particularly your own.

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