Calcium Heart Score Test and Heart Health

Calcium Heart Score Test

When it comes to preventing heart disease, knowing your risk is the first step. Part of that is knowing your Calcium Heart Score.  Your team at South Denver Cardiology can quickly get your calcium heart score and review those results with you. In fact, we are the Rocky Mountain region’s only home where we have what is considered the most accurate scanner that delivers the valuable calcium heart test score.

What Does Calcium Heart Score Mean?

The Calcium Heart Score is measure of calcified plaque in your coronary arteries. This score helps determine your risk for a heart attack. The Calcium Heart Test Score is the only clinically proven, non-evasive test for the early detection of heart disease.

The calcium scores range from 0 to 1,000 or more. The higher the number, the more plaque you have in your arteries. The scores are as follows:

  • 0-10 Minimal
  • 11 -100 Moderate
  • 101-400 Increased
  • 401+ Extensive

If a score comes back as 400 or more, you have an increased likelihood of developing heart disease in the next two to five years. If the score is more than 1,000, you have a 25 percent chance of having a heart attack in the next year without intervention.

How Does the Calcium Test for the Heart Work?

A Calcium Heart Score test is very quick and lasts less than a minute. It is a computer system tomography technology that rotates a thin x-ray beam around a patient to create a 3-D computer image of the heart. This rotational scanner creates 64-images, giving our cardiologists amazing images while your heart is beating and allows them to understand how your heart is functioning. And it does this almost twice as fast as conventional multi-slice CT scanners. There are no needles and no need to remove your clothing.

When the scan is complete, your calcium heart score is immediately processed and read by our staff. The results are also reviewed by a radiologist and result are sent to you and your physicians.

Who Should Have A Calcium Score Test?

We recommend that women over 40 and men over 35 years of ages have the test. Or, if you have two or more of the following heart disease risk factors:

  • Hypertension
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Sedentary or stressful lifestyle
  • Low HDL levels
  • Elevated LDL
  • Cigarette smoker (of former smoker)
  • Elevated triglycerides
  • Family history of heart disease
  • Obesity

How Do I Reduce My Calcium Heart Score?

If you have a high score, there are ways that you can lower it and, as a result, help reduce your risk for heart disease. In fact, we recently wrote about how to lower cholesterol without drugs, and many of those tips will lower your calcium score. Such things are adopting a diet with more fruit, vegetables and fish (such as the Mediterranean diet) will help as well as reducing saturated fats and getting more exercise into your daily routine.

How to Use this Information

A Calcium Heart Score is often not covered by insurance. But, we offer this preventative test for only $99.  You can schedule an appointment by calling 303-744-1065 or you can request an appointment online.