What is Nuclear cardiology?
It is a medical technique that works by introducing a small amount of radioactive material (radiotracer) into the body. This allows, through stress tests, images of the heart to be seen and thus detect damage induced by some treatment, provide follow-up to previous heart surgeries, or to diagnose diseases in the arteries or at the heart muscle.
Nuclear cardiology is usually very precise to evaluate the heart structure and offer concrete data that allows a more accurate diagnosis.
Typically, this study is performed when:
- There is unexplained chest pain.
- Respiratory problems appear.
- When other types of studies such as the EKG show signs of an abnormality in the heart.
Your medical history will be reviewed by your ABC doctor, who will perform a physical examination and explain the risks of the procedure.
In most cases, nuclear cardiology is usually an outpatient procedure, which means you could go home that same day. However, some people may require a short hospital stay to be evaluated and avoid complications.
Typically, each study can last between 20 and 30 minutes, so, on average, it might take two to four hours to complete the entire procedure.
Although nuclear cardiology is generally safe, remember that in any procedure there could be complications such as:
- Exposure to radiation.
- Allergy to radioactive components.
- Problems in pregnant or lactating women.
- Heart attacks, arrhythmias, and other heart problems.
At the Cardiovascular Center we offer you a wide range of prevention, diagnosis, timely treatment, and follow-up services to take care of you through a comprehensive and multidisciplinary care model. Come to us, we want to hear your heart.
Related centers and departments
- fundación española del corazón
- Gani F, Jain D, Lahiri A. The role of cardiovascular imaging techniques in the assessment of patients with acute chest pain. Nucl Med Commun. 2007; 28:441-9.
- Peix GA. Experiencia del Instituto de Cardiología en la evaluación del paciente con dolor torácico agudo mediante técnicas de Cardiología Nuclear. CorSalud. 2015;7(1):52-59.
- Rivas EE. Clausura VII Congreso Iberoamericano de Cardiología Nuclear e Imagen Cardíaca. Rev Cubana Cardiol Cir Cardiovasc. 2016;22(2):70-73.