During Kerin Jacob Swartz’s recent annual checkup, her health care provider recommended that she go in for a coronary calcium scan. This scan, also known as coronary artery calcium (CAC) scoring, is a test that shows the amount of calcium in the walls of the heart’s arteries. It takes approximately five minutes and results are typically provided the next day.
With Kerin and her family being new to the Richmond, Va. area, her provider recommended having the scan performed at the Bon Secours Short Pump Imaging Center. Kerin shares that her experience was nothing but positive, from the time she entered the building to leaving in comfort.
“I was a little nervous going in,” she admits. “When I got to the facility, the women at the check-in desk were incredibly supportive and put me at ease by saying I would be well taken care of.”
The next step was meeting with the technician to understand expectations before starting the scan.
“The process consisted of going into this machine that looked like a donut,” Kerin shares. “I laid down very still and thought the scan was easy. For those with concerns of claustrophobia, this is nothing like that. It’s an open space where you are laying down in your own comfortable clothing and doing breathing exercises.”
After having the procedure, Kerin received input from a specialist about what the results could show. It was explained that the best score to receive is a zero. Any number higher than zero is when a provider will reach out about the next steps.
“Afterwards, I was feeling very comfortable,” she shares. “Regardless of my results, I knew I was going to have a benchmark that could help me and my doctor for the rest of my life.”
CAC scoring can provide a sense of comfort for those looking for answers, and Kerin thinks it is something everyone should consider doing.
“Get it done. Don’t waste time. Don’t think twice,” she shares. “It gives you invaluable insight into one of the most important parts of your body.”
Learn more about our cardiology services at Bon Secours.