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    Thursday, October 28, 2010

    CT scans may diagnose heart attacks faster than standard tests.

    A rapid CT scan of the heart may provide doctors with a more efficient way to diagnose blocked arteries in people complaining of chest pain," according to research reported at the American Heart Association meeting. In "a study of 701 patients," researchers found that CT angiography "cuts in half the time it usually takes for a doctor to detect a blockage in an artery supplying the heart."
    The procedure also provides a "cheaper way to diagnose a heart attack when someone goes to the" emergency department (ED) with chest pains. The study showed that CT scan patients' testing cost "$2,137 on average versus $3,458 for standard screening."

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