Study: Too many angiograms?

March 10, 2010 2:29:51 PM PST
Angiograms are a common medical procedure for people with heart disease. But a new study of nearly 400,000 patients who underwent testing to determine if they had heart disease finds just 38 percent had enough narrowing of the arteries to qualify as heart disease.

Thirty-nine percent had no evidence of disease at all.

Angiograms carry a small risk of stroke or heart attack and also involve radiation exposure.

Critics argue that there currently are no better or cheaper testing methods and that even minor blockages can eventually lead to heart attacks.

The study appears in the New England Journal of Medicine.