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What is a coronary calcium test?

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Quick Answer

A coronary calcium test is a non-invasive scan that looks for buildup of calcium on the walls of the coronary arteries, says the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. The test is done to determine whether a person is in the early stages of heart disease.

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Full Answer

The coronary calcium scan is a special X-ray test called a computed tomography, or CT, explains WebMD. The CT scan takes several pictures of the heart in thin sections. These images are studied to determine whether a person is at risk of a heart attack or other heart diseases, according to Mayo Clinic. Specks of calcium on the walls of the arteries are an early sign of coronary heart disease. Coronary heart disease can lead to angina, arrhythmias and heart failure.

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