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Heart imaging is a valuable technique for detecting and treating heart disease. In Singapore, coronary artery scans are an essential tool for cardiologists, providing valuable insights into heart disease. This article discusses the various aspects of heart imaging in Singapore, with a focus on coronary artery scans, technological advancements, who needs these scans, and how to prepare for them. It also lists some of Singapore’s top heart imaging clinics.

Coronary Artery Scans: What They Are and Why They Matter

Coronary artery scans are an important tool for the early detection and treatment of heart disease. These specialist scans, which show calcium deposits in the coronary arteries, are critical in determining an individual’s risk of developing significant cardiovascular diseases. Here, we look at what these scans are, why they are important, and how they can affect heart health care.

What’s it For?

Coronary artery scans, commonly known as coronary artery calcium (CAC) scans, are sophisticated imaging techniques used to detect calcium deposits in the coronary arteries. These arteries are important because they feed blood to the heart muscle.

The presence of calcium in these arteries is an important signal. Calcium deposits are often indicative of plaque buildup, which is a key risk factor for coronary artery disease, one of the leading causes of heart-related illnesses and fatalities.

Detecting calcium deposits early with these scans might provide critical insights into one’s cardiovascular health, perhaps leading to earlier intervention and control of heart disease risks.

How Coronary Artery Scans Work

These scans employ computed tomography (CT) technology, specifically the specialist type known as cardiac CT. A coronary artery scan involves a patient laying on a table that slides inside a large, donut-shaped machine. The CT scanner takes numerous X-ray images, which are then combined to create a detailed cross-sectional view of the coronary arteries.

Importance of Coronary Artery Scans

Coronary artery scans are useful because:

  • Recognize the early symptoms of coronary artery disease (CAD).
  • Assist with predicting the likelihood of heart attacks.
  • Provide therapy recommendations to patients with known or suspected heart disease.
  • Help to monitor the effectiveness of therapy and lifestyle changes.

When Are Coronary Artery Scans Used?

Coronary artery scans are frequently conducted on persons who have risk factors for heart disease or are experiencing symptoms like chest pain, shortness of breath, or dizziness. These scans are very beneficial in recognizing coronary artery disease before it advances to more serious issues like a heart attack.

Advancements in Heart Imaging in Singapore: Technologies and Facilities

Singapore has established itself as a leading center for medical innovation, and heart imaging is no exception. The country has achieved significant advances in heart imaging technology, providing patients with accurate and consistent results.

Cutting-Edge Technologies

Heart imaging in Singapore utilizes cutting-edge technologies, such as:

  • Multidetector Computed Tomography (MDCT): This technique offers faster scanning with higher image resolution, allowing cardiologists to detect even trace amounts of calcium in the coronary arteries.
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI): While commonly used for a variety of heart-related conditions, cardiac MRI can offer detailed images of the heart’s architecture and function, enhancing coronary artery imaging.
  • Echocardiography: Echocardiography is a technique that uses ultrasonic waves to create images of the heart, which disclose information about its function and architecture.

Leading Facilities in Singapore

Singapore boasts some of the best medical facilities for cardiac imaging. These hospitals and clinics are equipped with cutting-edge technology and staffed by highly skilled cardiologists and radiologists, resulting in precise diagnoses and treatment. Here are some of the best facilities that offer cardiac imaging in Singapore:

  • National Heart Centre Singapore (NHCS) is a premier cardiac care institution that provides a wide range of heart imaging procedures, including coronary artery scans.
  • Gleneagles Hospital is a premium hospital that is well-known for delivering comprehensive cardiac care services, including cutting-edge heart imaging equipment.
  • Mount Elizabeth Hospital is another private hospital in Singapore that offers advanced heart imaging. It is well-known for offering superior cardiac treatment.

Who needs a Coronary Artery Scan? Identifying Risk Factors and Symptoms

Coronary artery scans are not typically included in routine medical exams. Instead, they are recommended for patients who have certain risk factors or symptoms of heart disease. Understanding who need these scans ensures that they are utilized effectively to identify and prevent heart disease.

Risk Factors for Coronary Artery Disease

Certain risk factors increase the likelihood of coronary artery disease, including:

  1. Age: People over 40 are at a greater risk.
  2. A family history of heart disease can increase the risk.
  3. Smoking causes plaque accumulation in the blood arteries.
  4. High blood pressure puts additional stress on the arteries.
  5. High cholesterol promotes plaque growth.
  6. Diabetes increases the risk for coronary heart disease.

Symptoms That Indicate the Need for a Coronary Artery Scan

While some risk factors, such as high cholesterol, hypertension, and a family history of heart disease, can predispose people to coronary artery disease, certain symptoms may warrant a coronary artery scan to more accurately assess heart health. Symptoms include:

  • Chest Pain (Angina): One of the most recognizable symptoms, chest pain or discomfort, also known as angina, can suggest reduced blood flow to the heart muscle, which is usually caused by coronary artery disease.
  • Shortness of Breath: Shortness of breath, particularly during physical activity or exercise, can indicate that the heart is unable to pump adequately due to clogged coronary arteries.
  • Fatigue: An unusual or chronic sense of tiredness or exhaustion during previously tolerable activity can indicate a decrease in cardiac output, which could be caused by the heart not obtaining enough oxygen-rich blood.
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness: These symptoms may occur as a result of a decrease in blood supply to the brain, which is frequently caused by inadequate blood flow from the heart and may indicate underlying coronary difficulties.
  • Heart palpitations: A fast, fluttering, or hammering heartbeat may suggest irregular heart rhythms caused by coronary artery disease or other cardiac disorders that impair the heart’s efficiency.

When these symptoms appear, particularly in those with known risk factors or a family history of heart disease, a coronary artery scan can be an important diagnostic tool for determining the amount of coronary calcification and guiding future treatment or preventive actions.

Getting Ready for Heart Imaging in Singapore: Tips for a Smooth Process

If you have a coronary artery scan or other heart imaging procedures scheduled, proper preparation can help the experience go more easily and stress-free. Here are some tips to help you prepare for your heart imaging appointment in Singapore.

Before the Appointment

  • Follow Fasting Guidelines: Some heart imaging procedures necessitate a fast of several hours before the procedure. Follow your healthcare practitioner’s recommendations.
  • Medications: Tell your doctor about any drugs you are currently taking. They will advise you whether to proceed or pause prior to the scan.
  • Dress Comfortably: You may need to change into a hospital gown, so dress loosely and comfortably.
  • Remove Metal Objects: Avoid wearing jewelry or other metal things, since they may interfere with the imaging process.

During the Scan

  • Stay Still: To obtain clear images, you must remain still throughout the scan. Movement can cause images to blur or distort.
  • Follow Instructions: The image professional will walk you through the entire process. Pay attentively and take their advice.
  • Breathe Normally: Certain scans may require you to hold your breath for a few seconds. Otherwise, breathe normally to achieve clear sights.

After the Scan

  • Expect Minimal Discomfort: Expect little discomfort because coronary artery scans are non-invasive. You can normally resume your normal activities shortly after the scan.
  • Follow-up with Your Doctor: After the scan, your cardiologist will review the results with you. Make sure to attend any follow-up appointments to talk about your next steps in heart care.

Finding the Right Clinic: The Best Places for Heart Imaging in Singapore

Choosing the correct clinic for cardiac imaging is critical for obtaining an accurate diagnosis and effective therapy. Singapore has a number of specialist clinics and hospitals that provide modern cardiac imaging services. When looking for the finest facility for coronary artery scans Singapore and other cardiac imaging treatments, there are various aspects to consider to ensure you receive the best possible care. Here are some thorough recommendations to assist you make your decision.

  • Reputation: The credibility of a clinic or hospital is critical. Choose institutes that are well-known for their expertise in cardiac treatment and imaging. Look for facilities with favorable patient reviews and solid endorsements from medical specialists in the industry.
  • Technologies and Equipment: Advanced imaging technologies are required for thorough and precise heart scans. Confirm that the clinic you choose has cutting-edge imaging technology, such as state-of-the-art CT scanners, which are critical for detecting coronary calcium and other cardiac abnormalities.
  • Experienced Staff: The medical team’s experience is important to providing successful cardiac treatment. Look for clinics that have highly qualified cardiologists, radiologists, and technicians with substantial experience in cardiac imaging. The presence of trained professionals ensures that imaging is not only accurate but also correctly interpreted.
  • Convenience: Practical aspects such as the clinic’s location and operating hours can have a big impact on your experience. Choose a clinic that is conveniently accessible and has flexible hours to meet your schedule, reducing the stress of juggling appointments and everyday responsibilities.

Best Clinics for Heart Imaging in Singapore

  • Harley Street Heart and Vascular Centre: Known for its exceptional patient care and cutting-edge facilities, the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center is a top supplier of cardiac imaging in Singapore. It employs a team of internationally qualified doctors and uses cutting-edge medical imaging technology to provide accurate diagnostics, including coronary artery scans Singapore.
  • National Heart Centre Singapore (NHCS): As a leading cardiac care facility, NHCS provides a wide range of heart imaging services. NHCS, known for its expert medical team and innovative equipment, is committed to providing superior care and precise diagnoses, making it a trusted name in cardiac health.
  • Raffles Heart Centre: Located within Raffles Hospital, this center provides a variety of cardiac imaging services in a patient-centered setting. The Raffles Heart Centre is well-known for its comprehensive and compassionate approach to heart care, which prioritizes patient comfort and precise diagnostics, such as coronary artery imaging.

Each of these Singapore clinics has the resources and ability to deliver high-quality heart imaging, which is critical for accurately diagnosing and managing heart diseases.


Heart imaging in Singapore has advanced substantially, thanks to cutting-edge technology and competent cardiac care professionals. Coronary artery scans are a useful tool for identifying and preventing heart disease, helping people to better manage their cardiovascular health.

Understanding the importance of coronary artery scans, determining who needs them, and learning how to prepare for cardiac imaging allows you to take proactive steps toward maintaining a healthy heart. With a number of top-tier clinics and hospitals in Singapore that offer heart imaging, you may find the greatest fit for your needs and receive the best care possible.

Are you seeking the premier cardiologist in Singapore to address your heart health concerns and perform cardiac artery imaging? Look no further than the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Center, where we are committed to delivering exceptional care.

Our team comprises seasoned specialists with extensive expertise in cardiovascular health, obesity management, and beyond. We pride ourselves on crafting personalized treatment plans tailored to each patient’s unique needs, ensuring they attain optimal outcomes from their visit.

Reach out to us today to schedule an appointment and begin taking proactive steps towards safeguarding your heart health!

Written by: Dr Michael MacDonald MB ChB, BSc (Hons), MRCP (UK), MD (Research), FESC (Europe).  Dr MacDonald was trained in the UK and is a senior Consultant Cardiologist.

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