Evaluation and Treatment of Coronary Artery Disease
Cardiac Catheterization and Angioplasty
Cardiac catheterization is an invasive technique used to evaluate for blockages of the coronary arteries. Valve function and heart function can also be assessed using this technique. The procedure involves passing a small hollow tube through an artery in the leg or wrist to the heart where a dye is injected and xray pictures are taken. This allows for very accurate assessment of any blockages that may be present.
Read more about cardiac catheterization and angiography.
Blockages found at the time of cardiac catheterization can frequently be treated using less invasive methods such as coronary stenting. Once a blockage is identified, a balloon is used to stretch open the narrowed artery. A stent (a tiny metal tube used to scaffold the artery) is frequently implanted following balloon angioplasty to keep the artery from collapsing.
Read more about coronary stent placement / balloon angioplasty.
An echocardiogram referred to in the medical community as a CARDIAC ECHO or simply and ECHO. This is a sonogram of the heart and uses standard ultrasound techniques to image two-demensional slices of the heart. In addition to creating two-dementional pictures of the heart an echocardiogram can also produce accurate pictures of the blood velocity using Doppler ultrasound. This allows assessment of cardiac valve areas and function, and abnormal communications between the left and right side of the heart, any leaking of blood through the valves, and calculation of heart function.
Read more about echocardiograms.
This is an alternative way to perform an echocardiogram. A specialized probe containing an ultrasound transducer at the tip is passed into the patient esophagus while the patient is sedated. This is known as transesophageal echocardiogram or (TEE).
Read more about transesophageal echocardiograms.
A carotid ultrasound is a safe, painless procedure that uses ultrasound waves from a machine to examine the structure and function of the arteries in the neck. You have two carotid arteries, one from each side of the neck that delivers blood from the heart to your brain.
Carotid ultrasound may be used by your doctor to screen for blockages that increase your risk of a stroke. A build up of fats, cholesterol, and calcium in the blood stream may cause narrowing in the arteries. Early detection of narrowing of the carotid arteries enables your doctor to begin treatments that improve blood flow to the brain and decrease the risk of a stroke.
Read more about carotid ultrasound.
A holter monitor is a device that records your heart rhythm. You may be asked to wear the monitor which will record your heart beat. The holter monitor is used by your physician if the electrocardiogram does not give your doctor enough information about your heart rhythm. Your cardiologist uses the information from the holter monitor to figure out if you have a heart rhythm problem.
A holter monitor is performed if you have problems such as a irregular heart beat or arrhythmia. The holter monitor may be able to detect irregularities in your heart rhythm that an electrocardiogram could not, since an electrocardiogram only takes a few seconds of your heart rhythm.
Read more about holter monitors.
Arrhythmia & Pacemaker Surveillance
Exercise Stress Testing
Nuclear medicine is a type of medical imaging that uses small amounts of radioactive material to diagnose and treat a variety of diseases, including cancers, heart disease and other abnormalities within the body. Nuclear medicine is unique because it documents function as well as structure.
Nuclear medicine or radionuclide imaging procedures are noninvasive, and except the intravenous injections, are usually painless medical tests to help physicians diagnose medical conditions. These imaging scans use radioactive materials called radiopharmaceuticals or radiotracers.
Read more about cardiac nuclear medicine.
Cardiovascular Risk Assessment & Management
Evaluation & Diagnosis of Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD)