Advanced vascular imaging enables us to assess how your blood flows through your blood vessels, so your symptoms can be diagnosed and treated effectively. Some of these exams even enable your vascular surgeon or other provider to perform a minor procedure, providing immediate treatment. Find a vascular surgeon near you.
What to expect
Imaging scans are usually completed in a vascular lab, cardiac catheterization lab or diagnostic imaging facility. These specialized rooms allow us to safely perform the exam and, if necessary, a minimally invasive procedure.
While each procedure is different, here’s a general idea of what you can expect:
- The exam is performed in a cardiac cath or vascular lab. The types of imaging technology we use include X-ray, ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT).
- The images provide a detailed picture of how your blood flows through your body.
- The surgeon examines the images to detect any blockages or plaque buildup that may be causing narrowing in the arteries.
- During certain procedures, such as an angiography, we can open clogged arteries.
Vascular imaging procedures
After asking you about your symptoms and performing a physical exam, we’ll recommend one or more of these imaging studies:
- Abdominal Doppler is a special ultrasound technique that evaluates how your blood flows through the vessels of the abdomen.
- Aortic angiography, also called an angiogram or arteriogram, uses X-ray and a special dye to see your arteries.
- Cerebral vascular Doppler uses sound waves to measure the velocity of blood flow within the blood vessels to, and within, the brain.
- CT Angiography (CTA) combines the technology of a conventional CT scan with that of traditional angiography to create detailed images of the blood vessels in the body.
- Magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) uses magnets to create detailed images of the blood vessels.
- Nuclear medicine tests use a small about of radioactive tracer to check the blood supply to the heart with a special camera.
- Peripheral Doppler ultrasound is an ultrasound test of the blood flow through blood vessels of the extremities (legs and arms) that we use to diagnose peripheral artery disease (PAD) or peripheral vascular disease (PVD).
- Vascular access procedures use a small, thin, flexible tube (catheter) that’s inserted into a blood vessel (usually a vein) to draw blood, or deliver nutrients or medication.
- Vascular ultrasound (carotid duplex) shows how well blood is flowing through the carotid artery. Learn more about vascular ultrasound.
Learn more about our advanced vascular procedures.
Low-cost screenings allow us to detect vascular disease in its early stages, when treatment is most effective.