Cardiac catheterization indications

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]

Overview

Cardiac catheterization is performed to diagnose and assess the severity of aortic, coronary artery, pulmonary arterial, valvular, pericardial and myocardial disease.

Indications for Cardiac Catheterization

  • Confirm the presence of a suspected heart ailment
  • Quantify the severity of the disease and its effect on the heart
  • Seek out the cause of a symptom such as shortness of breath or signs of cardiac insufficiency
  • Make a patient assessment prior to heart surgery
  • To measure intracardiac and intravascular blood pressures
  • To take tissue samples for biopsy
  • To inject various agents for measuring blood flow in the heart; also to detect and quantify the presence of an intracardiac shunt
  • To inject contrast agents in order to study the shape of the heart vessels and chambers and how they change as the heart beats

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