What is the role of beta blockers in coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA)?

Updated: Dec 21, 2017
  • Author: Eugene C Lin, MD; Chief Editor: Eugene C Lin, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

Beta-blocker administration is often helpful in cardiac CT scanning to lower the heart rate and decrease motion artifact. The level to which the heart rate should be lowered depends on the temporal resolution of the scan.

However, heart rate variability may be a more important determinant of image quality than absolute heart rate. [4] Beta blockers are also helpful in patients with irregular heart rates, supraventricular tachycardias, and arrhythmias.

Several contraindications to beta-blocker therapy exist, including a heart rate below 60 bpm, a systolic blood pressure below 100 mm Hg, and decompensated cardiac failure, among others.


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