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Cardiac Tests and Procedures

The following diagnostic tests to diagnose heart problems are performed by specialists at Tanner Heart and Vascular Centers in Carrollton and Villa Rica:

cardiac ablation


Ablation uses a small wire at the end of a catheter to scar, or “ablate,” small areas in the heart that are causing irregular heart rhythms. Ablations are used to treat supraventricular tachycardia, ventricular tachycardia and premature ventricular contractions.



Angiography — also called a cardiac cath or heart cath — is a test to check the blood flow in your coronary arteries, as well as blood flow and blood pressure in the chambers of the heart. This test shows how well your heart valves work and detects any defects in the way the walls of you heart moves. Learn more about angiography.


Cardiac Calcium Scoring

Calcium scoring uses a computer tomography (CT) scan to diagnose the presence and extent of calcified plaque inside your coronary arteries. You receive a "calcium score." A low score means that no calcification is present, while a high score means that atherosclerosis, or coronary artery disease (CAD), is present.

illustration of circulatory system
tanner cath lab

Cardiac Catheterization

Cardiac catheterization (also called a heart cath angiography) is a test in which a small, hollow tube called a catheter is guided through the large artery in your upper leg, wrist or arm into your heart. Dye is released through the catheter, and moving X-ray pictures are made as the dye travels through the heart.

This comprehensive test shows narrowed areas in the arteries, heart chamber size, pumping ability of the heart and ability of the valves to open and close, as well as a measurement of the pressures within the heart chambers and arteries.

Cardiac CT Scan

A computer tomography (CT) scan — sometimes called a "CAT" scan — uses X-rays and a powerful computer to generate clear three-dimensional and cross-sectional images of your heart and blood vessels.

Cardiac PET/CT

Positron emission tomography, or PET, uses a radioactive drug called a “tracer” that pools in areas of the body with elevated levels of chemical activity. When used in combination with a cardiac CT scan, highly detailed images of your heart can be used for diagnosis.

Carotid Ultrasound

Carotid ultrasound uses sound waves to create images of the insides of the two carotid arteries in your neck, which supply your brain with blood. The test determines if a material called plaque has narrowed your carotid arteries. A blockage in these arteries can lead to a stroke.

illustration of circulatory system


An echocardiogram, or “echo” test, uses a sound-wave transducer to bounce sound waves off your heart and create a two-dimensional image of your heart on a screen. This noninvasive test is used to determine how well your heart is functioning and detect any problems with your heart. Learn more about echocardiograms.

Fractional Flow Reserve

Fractional flow reserve, or FFR, is a guide wire-based procedure that can accurately measure blood pressure and flow through a specific part of a coronary artery. The measurement of FFR determines the severity of any narrowing in your coronary arteries and helps doctors assess if they need to perform angioplasty or stenting on a blockage to improve blood flow to your heart.

Holter Monitor

A Holter monitor is small, portable, battery-powered ECG machine worn by a person to record heartbeats on tape over a period of 24 to 48 hours during normal activities. At the end of the time period, the monitor is returned to the doctor’s office so the tape can be read and evaluated. Learn more about Holter monitoring.

mri machine


MRA/MRI Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a diagnostic procedure that uses a combination of large magnets, radio frequencies and a computer to produce detailed images of your heart. Magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) is a specialized type of MRI used to evaluate blood vessels in the heart. Learn more about MRA and MRI.

Nuclear Stress Test

During a nuclear stress test, safe, radioactive agents called “tracers” are injected into a vein to produce an image of your heart. This test may be used in conjunction with a regular stress test; however, is also used to simulate the effects of exercise on the heart if you are physically unable to exercise. Learn more about nuclear stress testing.

Pacemaker Insertion

Pacemaker insertion is the implantation of a pacemaker — a device to help regulate electrical problems with your heart — into your chest just below your collarbone. This is generally an outpatient procedure. Learn more about pacemakers and pacemaker implantation.


Stress Test

During a stress test, or exercise electrocardiogram, you walk on a treadmill or pedal a stationary bike while a technician monitors your heart. Breathing and blood pressure rates are also monitored. A stress test may be used to detect coronary artery disease or to determine safe levels of exercise following a heart attack or heart surgery.  Learn more about stress tests.

Tilt Table Test

During a tilt table test, you are connected to ECG and blood pressure monitors and strapped to a table that tilts you from a lying to standing position. This test is used to determine if you are prone to sudden drops in blood pressure or slow pulse rates with position changes. Learn more about tilt table testing.

To schedule an appointment for a cardiac test or procedure at a Tanner Heart and Vascular Center, have a physician’s order ready and call Tanner Central Scheduling at 770-812-9721.

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