USA Health Heart Center Outpatient Testing
One of the most important steps in addressing a person’s heart problem is to first assess the exact nature of the problem. USA Health cardiologists use a number of different procedures to do just that at our Heart Center. Our facility is accredited by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission, meaning that we have demonstrated a high level of care to our patients. When necessary, our interventional cardiologists conduct CT angiograms, implant loop recorders or perform other minimally invasive procedures to help diagnose what’s wrong with your heart or vascular system. We also perform the following tests on a regular basis:
- EKG–An electrocardiogram measures electrical activity in the heart.
- Holter monitor–The Holter monitor is a portable device that measures and records a patient’s heart activity.
- Echocardiogram–This test uses sound waves to help a doctor understand how well a patient’s heart pumps blood.
Various forms of stress testing help doctors determine how the heart functions when physically challenged. In our stress lab, we perform the following stress-related diagnostics:
- Stress test–Also called an exercise stress test, this test helps doctors determine how arrhythmia or coronary artery disease might affect your heart’s ability to function properly.
- Stress echocardiogram–Using sound waves, an echocardiogram assesses how well a patient’s heart pumps blood. It is performed while the patient is exercising.
- Nuclear stress test–With the use of a radioactive dye and an imaging device, a nuclear stress test creates a picture of the patient’s heart, first at rest and then after exertion.
USA Health offers many vascular ultrasound studies to help physicians check and assess blood flow in arteries and veins throughout the body. These include:
- CT angiogram–This minimally invasive diagnostic procedure involves a catheter that helps physicians determine the condition of peripheral blood vessels.
- Doppler study–This is an ultrasound test that measures a patient’s blood flow through the extremities.
- Ankle-brachial index–This test helps doctors understand how peripheral artery disease (PAD) is affecting the circulation in a patient’s lower extremities.
- Toe-brachial index–Similar to an ankle-brachial index, a toe-brachial index can be a more reliable indicator of PAD, as the vessels in a person’s toes are less likely to be stiff than ankle vessels.
- Nuclear stress test–This procedures uses a radioactive dye and an imaging machine to create a picture of blood flow through someone’s peripheral vascular system.
- Fractional flow reserve (FFR)–Using a standard catheter, this novel method measures blood flow in specific parts of a blood vessel.
- Instant wave-free ratio (iFR)–An alternative to fractional flow reserve that works a similar way, iFR also measures blood flow in the vascular system.