Diagnostic Cardiac Catheterization

cath_labChester River Hospital Center provides cutting-edge diagnostic cardiac catheterization in its state of the art laboratory. The diagnostic procedure, which is performed by our medical staff cardiologists, produces images of the coronary arteries and heart.

During this outpatient procedure, the cardiologist inserts a thin flexible tuber (catheter) into a blood vessel in the groin or arm. A contrast medium (commonly called "dye") is injected through the catheter to determine whether narrowing or blockages are present in the coronary (heart) arteries, and to measure precisely how well the heart valves and heart muscle function.


Angiography is an x-ray study of the arteries. This procedure involves injecting a contrast material (x-ray dye) into a blood vessel to make it visible on an x-ray. The dye is placed directly in the artery through a very small flexible tube called a catheter, which is inserted in to the artery through a small nick in the skin.

The procedure is often used to detect abnormalities of the blood vessels, such as narrowing and blockage caused by fatty deposits or blood clots, and aneurysms. Angiography can also detect abnormal patterns of blood vessels caused by tumors and can show sites of internal bleeding. Defining these blood vessel abnormalities can help the physician determine the extent of disease and determine the best treatment option.

Areas imaged through angiography include the carotid artery in the neck, the renal arteries serving the kidneys, the aorta in the abdomen and the blood vessels in the legs.