Angiogram- my experience... - British Heart Fou...

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Angiogram- my experience...


Hi all - said I would update after angiogram yesterday and to all of those who reassured me beforehand - you were right. And anyone facing one soon.....

PLEASE don’t worry..... honestly and that comes from the biggest worrier ever. I know it is hard but it really was not that bad.

So to take you through. First stop I go to the day ward. Am given a gown (and prob better to wear elastic waist bottoms) you keep these on. Everything else on top comes off and open back gown goes on. Have ECG done. Nurses come to take all the information etc and then to put in a precautionary iv (cannula in arm) Slightly uncomfortable but ok, honestly.

Then I walk to theatre. Oh sorry forgot. Slightly disconcerting but before I go in the Dr doing procedure comes to see me to explain they do many of these operations every day but all procedures have risk etc. etc. I then panic and get a bit upset and said I WILL be having a sedative though ? Won’t I? She replies yes if you want it. DEFINITELY!

So into the operating theatre lots of people about. They attach monitors and there are big cameras / screens overhead and to side. But I don’t look 😂!

Given a dose of sedative then procedure begins. They went in through my wrist. First given local anaesthetic there though which feels like scratch and then quite a lot of pressure / and it is a bit uncomfortable but at that point I said “hang on don’t feel I have enough sedative 😆😆😆”. May I have more please? They put more in through the cannula on other arm. Feel much better and quite relaxed.

Then apart from the pressure on my wrist I did not feel anything re the catheter going in (which was my main concern). Really .... nothing... no pain. After a while (lost sense of time to be honest) Dr said ok we are going to put dye in.... it may feel a bit like a burning sensation. It wasn’t actually- was warmish but not horrible and yes it did feel weird (and slightly as if you’ve wet yourself 😬) but that feeling only temporary. Then all was over.

Was wheeled back to ward for 4 hours or so recovery. Had a clear pressure cuff on wrist with air in it. They take out a little of air reducing pressure every half an hour.

At end of day cannula was removed (bit uncomfortable again but remember I am a big wuss!) oh and they took more blood. Don’t know why though?!

Got out about 2.30pm having gone in at 8am. Today my wrist is a bit sore and bruised and I feel weary but am honestly ok. Best part is that I was told my arteries are clear, and can support the AVR when that comes. One hurdle at least is over.... (for now)

All the best to everyone


68 Replies

Hi, really great to read your post said it was ok😉 as you say one hurdle over. When the time comes for you AVR this will be the same not as bad as your imagination makes out,

Best wishes Pauline

Flowerfanatic in reply to 080311

Thank you so much Pauline. Yes you were quite right 😃. Feeling a bit weary today and wrist a

little sore but I’m through it !

With best wishes


Super update, thank-you! It's going to help anyone waiting for their angiogram to know what to expect from someone who has been there-done that-got to go home:) As for the post-procedure blood draw, that may have been to save you having to go to the GP surgery in a few days. I had to go to the surgery for the post-procedure bloods but that was before the pandemic changed everything about just popping down to the surgery. So they may have done those post-procedure draws now rather than sending you to a surgery that may be closed or under restrictions. If you find out can you let us know?

And have you come out of the anxiety relief fog yet? Mine lasted three rather blissful days, it was lovely (I too am a wuss).

Onwards and upwards now to the AVR!

Hello there Sunnie2day.. thanks for your kind words about my post and I do hope it may help some facing this too. And yes, you’re probably right about the blood testing afterwards! Still in relief euphoria at the moment although quite tired today!

All best


Well done, hope you are relaxing now. You may get a super multi coloured bruise on your wrist as a badge of honour. Sure your post will help others who fear the procedure.

Thanks so much Nathan53. Hope it may help others. And yes think I may be getting that “badge of honour” !

All good wishes


MichaelJHHeart Star

Thank you for your post which I hope reassures those awaiting the procedure.

I had contrast via the canulla. Did you not have it? For the procedure I did not have a sedative but watched the screen and discussed the findings with my cardiologist who performed the procedure. Four arteries were blocked between 70% and 85% (the LAD). After further tests it was decided I was unstentable and I was referred to a specialist "heart and lung" hospital for a quadruple bypass.

Hi MichaelJh - do hope you’re continuing to do ok after your bypass....?

Hmm 🤔 maybe the dye went in via cannula - to be honest all I remember the Dr saying was that they were going to put the dye in and it may feel very warm / burning. Kept my eyes closed so didn’t really know where it went in 😉!

All best wishes


MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to Flowerfanatic

If we are ever in the same car I think I will drive if you shut your eyes! 🤣🤣🤣

Haha MichaelJH 😂.... fine by me !

Fallot in reply to Flowerfanatic

My angiogram was 42 years ago (part of the diagnosis of ToF). The contrast definitely went in through the catheter so that it could be injected exactly where they wanted to see the blood flows. Injecting through the cannula would not achieve that.

GrannyE in reply to MichaelJH

Good luck with the bypass. Isn’t it wonderful what they can do nowadays?

MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to GrannyE

My quadruple was over 2 years ago. Currently I am in rehab following the amputation of my lower left leg. No signs of a new one growing though! 🤣🤣🤣

Hope the rehab going well

MichaelJH - good to see your sense of humour and good spirit seems very much in tact 👍🏼😁

Best wishes


GrannyE in reply to MichaelJH

Oh good heavens! Good luck with that one. Will we see you in the paralympics.

Thanks for that, Flowerfanatic. I’m waiting for an angiogram. No date yet but your post reassured me.

Oh am very pleased to hear that it was of some help to you, Roversfan. Hope you hear soon and meanwhile try not to worry too much.

All the best


I'm due to have an Angiogram on Monday, thanks for your post, it has helped to read about what to expect.

Gp referred me to cardiologist for suspected Angina and so to the Angiogram. I'm nervous but also feeling shocked by the diagnosis. I had been ignoring my symptoms putting it down to other things, but during lockdown my husband noticed and pushed me to see the doctor. It has been interesting to read other people's experiences.

Dear Knitclaire,

So glad the post has been of some help and it is good that your suspected angina is being investigated.... it is all too easy to pass off symptoms blaming them on something else. I know I have done it, not wanting to make a fuss or think anything is wrong. And it is a shock when a you think something is wrong with your heart - I do understand. Let me know how you go next Monday. Will be thinking of you and meanwhile try not to worry (too much ! ).

All the best to you


I wish you all the Best for your angiogram But like this Brilliant update tells you it's a worry but Honestly it's not anywhere near as bad as you'd imagine .

Thank you so much. I have just been diagnosed with unstable angina and put forward for an expedited angiogram. How long that will take, I don't know and was too scared to ask!

I have been told that 4/17 areas are abnormal and my LAD has a blockage but I don't know the percentage.

I was told yesterday not to lift, carry heavy things or, joy of joy, hoover, so not all bad!

Many thanks for your account, I now know what to expect.


Flowerfanatic in reply to Rostom

Happy to have been some help for you Rostom... the best of luck to you and let us know how you get on. And keep the “no hoovering” rule for as long as you possibly can 😉!

With best wishes to you,


I was unfortunate to need 6 Angiograms over the space of 2 years as I had Major issues . And each time they done it through my Groin . Everytime i was apprehensive But it was a bit uncomfortable but not as bad as you'd imagine . These where between the age of 40 & 42 . I would say it's natural to be scared but it's to perhaps save your life .

Dear Allyboy1973, - 6 angiograms -

that’s a lot foe you to get through. And you’re right and it being natural to be apprehensive. Hope you’re doing alright now.

Best wishes, Sarah

Thank you I'm doing well and back working after 2 Double Heart Bypasses in the space of 20 Months . As the first never worked . The last being summer 2016 . I'm just happy to be here . I Hope you are well and continue to be so after your precedure

Thats so great you’re back working and doing well. 👍🏼

Wishing you continued good health,


Great post Sarah. A great description of an angiogram. Even better news that your arteries are ok. I have 3 diseased arteries. The one which was totally blocked and caused my heart attack on 2nd August 2020 was my LAD. This was stented by Angioplasty. Unfortunately a lot of my heart muscle died as a result of HA .waiting to see if any improvements. Also LVEF was reduced to 15%. Again waiting for improvements.

A long road of recovery ahead.

Keep us posted on your journey and I will try to do the same

Jim x

Hello Jim - thank you re my post. Am sorry though to hear that your recovery road will be long though and of your recent heart attack.

Wishing you all the best,


I read ur post seems you have gone thru a lot and hope u will improve I had a lot of heart muscle damaged and low ef and wondered if ur gp advices a icd and also wish u the best let us know how u are

Hi Yasyass. My cardiologist seems pretty keen to put a defribulator in. I am gearing up for one to be fitted. I am having an MRI scan on Friday so hoping to get some more feedback on the next stage of recovery for me after the results are back for that. Until then I am trying to take it easy, as doctors advise, will keep you updated. Sounds like we may have had similar HA

Hope your doing ok?

Jim x

Thanks for your reply I do walk most days has I don’t have sympton for hf it’s very difficult and worry esp if someone lived healthy before the ha I do hope everything goes well for u I too had a mri 6mths ago wh the cardio suggest. A icd but due to the virus most things have been delayed plz kp me posted how u go wish u the best

Yes! It's never as bad as we think it's going to be!

I was rushed to St George's from Kingston Hospital to have mine done there - "gold standard" they called it. After signing the indemnity form (small chance the procedure could kill me - if I didn't do it, I was going to die anyway, so easy choice, really), I was wheeled into the theatre. My experience was strange, too, as there were a number of students in the room! My angioplasty was handled by a qualified doctor, though.

It was surreal watching the ink pump through my heart - but seeing the issue causing my heart attacks was sobering (99% blocked left coronary). It took a while, and even had a small nap halfway through - once the local kicks in and they've injected, you don't really feel anything.

After, they showed me the before and after pictures on the screens to show me exactly what they'd done. Honestly, the worst part of the whole thing was the pressure bracelet they put around my wrist - it left the area quite bruised and tender for a few days after it came off.

Hello to you The_Voice,

Thanks for writing with your experience- bit scary for you to have been rushed to St George’s though would imagine.

Hope you’re doing ok now....

with best wishes


Glad everything went ok for you Sarah .

I had ha in April and had one stent via angioplasty. I didn’t look either !!! Too scared and I’m

A nurse too !! Lol

I was told had a 99 per cent blockage of RCA.

I know I doing ignorant but what does LAD mean please ?

Sheila x

Hello EmmyLaury12 - thanks so much for your message and do hope you’re doing ok now. To be honest I’m not sure what LAD means either 😉 as that was in a post (in reply to mine) from a Jim (jmpond90@gmailcom) !

With best wishes to a fellow ‘eye-coverer’ 😂🙈!


Thanks Sarah

I know I honestly couldn’t look

Didn’t have any sedation either wasn’t offered ☹️ I would have been up for that 😀

Glad your results were fine and everything appears normal with your heart .

Take care x

Hi EmmyLaury12 - that’s very frustrating for you that you weren’t offered sedative! No way could I have done it without.

My arteries are all good but I do still need my Aortic Valve replaced soon (ish) apparently as it is severely narrowed due to being born with a bicuspid (2 leaflets instead of 3) valve... This has come on over the last few years as the valve has had to work overtime because of the deformity.

Best wishes


Hope you go on ok Sarah ,

Take care x

Thank you so much 😊

Hi Sheila/Sarah, LAD = Left Anterior Descending Artery. It supplies the Left Ventricle with blood. The Left Ventricle supplies blood to everywhere in your body apart from the back and the lungs which are supplied by the Right Ventricle. A colluded LAD is also nicknamed the WidowMaker for obvious reasons so I guess I am very to be typing hey!

Jim x

Hi jm

Thanks for reply and the information re-LAD you are lucky to be typing if you had that artery blocked !!

Mine was RCA so explains a lot why I was out of breath a lot going up hills if supplies blood to lungs .

Thank you so much for your reply .

Hope you doing ok x

What's RCA? I am still coming to terms with it at the moment. 2nd August 2020 was my HA date. I think frustration would best describe my mood at the moment. So im up and down a bit at the moment. Hope your doing ok? I find this forum helps as everyone understands you and gets what your going through so its really helpful and informative and supportive

Jim x

RCA Lol 😂 is right coronary artery .

I understand your frustration and it’s early days for you I had my HA April so coming to terms with a little bit better than I did .

This forum is the best thing ever as I feel people on here really understand where I’m coming from with worries, anxiety frustration etc so thank you to everyone who replies to my posts so grateful.

Take care Jim ,

Just think we survived a HA and we can be strong now ,

Sheila x

Thanks Sheila x

For those that wish to see what happens in a Angiogram there are some excellent videos by medical practitioners on YouTube that can be found by searching for 'Angiogram'.

Sunnie2day in reply to STUBAX

The BHF video is excellent viewing for anyone waiting (or their loved ones - my husband watched it with me several times):

Flowerfanatic in reply to STUBAX

Yes you’re right STUBAX, lots of excellent videos around 👍🏼

Am due to have mine done mid October so great to see your post ... thank you most helpful .. think I have the main pipe checked at the same time ... (the name escapes me ) so hopefully a good bill of health at the end .. I have AF .. thanks again

Dear Gaz4545 - wishing you all the best for your angiogram- don’t be nervous and glad my post helped a little.

Best wishes


So glad you got through it.

Dear Schora1 -

Thank you so much. Very kind of you.

Best wishes


Well done and great news your arteries are clear and you do not need a stent.

Thanks so much Surreychica_1 - I was very relieved that I got through ok 👌🏼 and arteries all clear !

All the best to you


That's good Sarah. Sometimes our minds play tricks and there's a feeling of panic over nothing.

You having mentioned that warm feeling and perhaps wetting yourself reminds me of my husband who asked me to check the back of his trousers to see if they were wet when he'd had the procedure!!

You'll probably have bruising for a while. Hubby's was like a Dulux colour chart where I found the perfect colour for a bathroom cabinet. Needless to say he wouldn't come with me to B and Q so they could mix the colour!!!

Take care and have a rest xxxxx

Flowerfanatic in reply to Handel

Dear Handel - oh your reply has made me chuckle both with the “trouser checking “ and the colour chart!! 🤣

And so right re our minds making us panic unduly sometimes!

All the best to you


Hi, Thanks for the post. I have my angiogram tomorrow. Been waiting since february and I think the waiting has been the worst part. Your post has reassured me.

Best wishes for your future procedures.

Dear PumpkinTag - I will be thinking of you and hope all goes well. So pleased I could be of some help. Let us know how it goes. And thanks for your kind words.

All the best to you


Hi, so pleased to read your update. Well done you. What's so wonderful about this forum is that everyone can both give and receive support. Onward and upward!

Thanks so much Astronomyrules - I really agree - have been supported on this forum so much already since I joined a month ago thought I would try and give back a little with my contribution.

Best wishes


Thank you so much for your post! I’m worried they are going to go up through my leg. But reading g your post was very helpful💕

Glad it has helped you a bit Kristy75.... hope all goes well for you and try not to worry too much. Am not sure what the criteria is for whether they use wrist or groin.... I think (but am no expert) that most are done through the wrist. Someone else may be able to shed more light on this perhaps.

Good luck and all the best


Well done. Proud of you. Anxiety is really hard to deal with and it sounds like you overcame it. And a good result. Onwards and upwards. 😍

Flowerfanatic in reply to Denva

Thank you so much Denva. Very kind of you. Yes, onwards and upwards!

All the best to you


Well done. I have had 4 and concur. Not such a Wuss after all.

LOL 😂- thanks Smileyian. And you must be an expert now after 4 !!

Haha..... over 5 years - however I havnt won any prizes.

Hi there, it’s so good of you to keep people updated on your angiogram and how things occurred. I’m sure your account will put many people at ease, especially people who are very anxious or “a bit of a wuss” (like so many of us) and the fact it has showed your arteries are clear proves the importance of the procedure and is a great help towards your future AVR. Wishing you all the best with that.

Flowerfanatic in reply to Trog1

Hi Trog1 - that’s really kind of you to say.... Have had some very good support and reassurance from this forum already and wanted to write my experience in order to “pay forward” and help others if at all possible. Especially those of an anxious disposition .... 😬😣😬

Also many thanks for your good wishes re my future AVR.

All the best to you


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