ANTONIA REEVE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ANTONIA REEVE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Angiography. Surgeon studying an angiogram (far right) of a patient's heart during coronary angiography. Angiography is an imaging technique which enables blood vessels to be studied. A contrast medium opaque to X-rays is injected into a vein through a catheter (lower left). A sequence or continuous recording of X-ray images is taken by the machines (centre), allowing the blood flow to be observed. It is used to diagnose blood vessel disorders such as aneurysm (ballooning vessel walls) and atherosclerosis (hard plaques blocking the inside of the vessels). These can lead to angina pectoris (chest pain) or a heart attack. Treatment depends on the cause.
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