What is a Heart Scan?

A Heart Scan, also known as a coronary calcium scan, provides pictures of your heart’s arteries (coronary arteries). Doctors use heart scans to look for calcium in the coronary arteries and to look for blockages. The result of this is called a coronary calcium score.

Coronary calcium scoring is the most effective, noninvasive method  to identify the presence of CAD. CAD (Coronary Artery Disease) is the leading cause of death of men and women in the United States. CAD occurs as plaque clogs and narrows the heart arteries. Bon Secours employs a state-of-the-art 64-slice CT imaging system to capture images of the beating heart to measure the buildup of plaque on the walls of the coronary arteries.

Based on your calcium score, your doctor will tailor treatment to lower your risk of a heart attack.

Who should be screened?

Heart scans are recommended for those at risk of developing heart disease, but who do not yet have any symptoms. You may consider calcium scoring if you are a man over 40 or a woman over 50 with one or more of the following risk factors:

  • family history of heart disease and/or stroke
  • history of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and/or stroke
  • diabetic over 35 years old
  • history of smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke
  • overweight
  • inactive lifestyle
  • high stress levels

What can I expect?

The Heart Scan is quick and noninvasive. It does not require any patient preparation, injections or IVs. You simply lie down, fully clothed, and the scan lasts only a few minutes. Your total appointment time should be less than one hour. A cardiologist experienced in CT will analyze your images and send a report to you, and with your approval, to your physician. If your report indicates you are at risk, our Bon Secours cardiologist and your primary care physician will determine the next steps for your treatment.

Is the test covered by insurance?

Because the Heart Scan is a screening test, it is not covered by insurance. Therefore, the patient is responsible for the cost of the exam. Bon Secours offers this test for $129, payable by credit card (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX) or debit card (Visa, MasterCard).

Call 889-CARE (2273) to schedule your appointment today.

+ Learn More About the Bon Secours Heart & Vascular Institute
+ Find a Screening or Event Near You
+ Read More Articles about Cardiac Health

2 thoughts on “What is a Heart Scan?

    1. BSHR


      The contact information has changed since that article was published two years ago. If you call the contact center at (757) 889-2273 they should be able to direct you to the proper resource at the Bon Secours Heart and Vasacular Institute.

      If not, we recommend calling the H&VI directly at (757) 398-2222!


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