Echocardiogram, often referred to cardiac echo or simply an echo, is a sonogram of the heart. (It is not abbreviated as ECG, which in medicine usually refers to an electrocardiogram.) Echocardiography uses standard two-dimensional, three-dimensional, and Doppler ultrasound to create images of the heart.
Echocardiography has become routinely used in the diagnosis, management, and follow-up of patients with any suspected or known heart diseases. It is one of the most widely used diagnostic tests in cardiology. It can provide a wealth of helpful information, including the size and shape of the heart (internal chamber size quantification), pumping capacity, and the location and extent of any tissue damage. An Echocardiogram can also give physicians other estimates of heart function such as a calculation of the cardiac output, ejection fraction, and diastolic function (how well the heart relaxes).
Echocardiography can help detect cardiomyopathies, such as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, dilated cardiomyopathy, and many others. The use of Stress Echocardiography may also help determine whether any chest pain or associated symptoms are related to heart disease. The biggest advantage to echocardiography is that it is noninvasive (doesn’t involve breaking the skin or entering body cavities) and has no known risks or side effects.
An electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) is a test that checks for problems with the electrical activity of your heart. An EKG translates the heart’s electrical activity into line tracings on paper. The spikes and dips in the line tracings are called waves.
Cardiac monitoring systems, crucial to cardiovascular care, are used by clinicians to assess the presence and severity of cardiac disease and to evaluate the efficacy of treatments such as drugs, interventions, operations and device implants. We develop, manufacture and market a family of advanced diagnostic cardiology devices such as electrocardiograph systems, stress test systems and holter monitoring systems.
Infusions are tailored to fit each patient and are usually given one to three times per week. The duration of each infusion is typically four hours. The patient has a peripherally inserted central catheter (IV PICC) inserted into the vein of his/her arm by either IV team or the radiology department. The PICC line allows for ease of blood draws for laboratory tests and for infusion of mediations. The PICC line may be used indefinitely, and only needs to be changed if it clots or is infected.
In human anatomy, the left and right common carotid arteries are arteries that supply the head and neck with oxygenated blood; they divide in the neck to form the external and internal carotid arteries.
Carotid ultrasonography is an ultrasound-based diagnostic imaging technique to reveal structural details of the carotid arteries, so as to look for blood clots, atherosclerotic plaque buildup, and other blood flow problems.
A carotid duplex is a carotid ultrasonography carried out by duplex ultrasonography. A duplex carotid ultrasound may include a Doppler ultrasound, a special test able to reveal the movement of blood cells through the carotid arteriess.
Left heart catheterization is the passage of a thin flexible tube (catheter) into the left side of the heart to diagnose or treat certain heart problem
Aortic angiography is a procedure that uses a special dye and x-rays to see how blood flows through the aorta, the major artery leading out of the heart, and through your abdomen or belly. Angiography is an imaging test that uses x-rays and a special dye to see inside the arteries. Arteries are blood vessels that carry blood away from the heart.
An implantable cardioverter-Defibrillator (ICD) is a small battery-powered electrical impulse generator that is implanted in patients who are at risk of sudden cardiac death due to ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia. The device is programmed to detect cardiac arrhythmia and correct it by delivering a jolt of electricity. In current variants, the ability to revert ventricular fibrillation has been extended to include both atrial and arrhythmias. There also exists the ability to perform biventricular pacing in patients with ventricular or bradycardia.
The process of implantation of an ICD is similar to implantation of a pacemaker. Similar to pacemakers, these devices typically include electrode wire(s) that pass through a vein to the right chambers of the heart, usually lodging in the apex of the right ventricle. The difference is that pacemakers are more often temporary and are generally designed to correct bradycardia, while ICDs are often permanent safeguards against sudden arrhythmias.
The most recent development is the subcutaneous ICD (S-ICD). Current state-of-the-art electronics and batteries have enabled an implantable device to deliver enough energy to defibrillate the heart without the need for a lead in or on the heart. This prevents lead-related problems and the risk of dangerous infections in or near the heart. This ICD is positioned just under the skin and outside the ribcage. It can be placed during a minor procedure under conscious sedation.
A right heart catheterization is performed to determine how well the heart is pumping and to measure the pressures in the heart and lungs.
In a right heart cath, the doctor guides a special catheter (a small, hollow tube) called a pulmonary artery (PA) catheter to the right side of the heart and passes it into the pulmonary artery, the main artery carrying blood to the lungs. The doctor observes blood flow through the heart and measures the pressures inside the heart and in the lungs.
In medicine, a Holter monitor (often simply “Holter” or occasionally ambulatory electrocardiography device) is a portable device for continuously monitoring various electrical activity of the cardiovascular system for at least 24 hours (often for two weeks at a time). The Holter’s most common use is for monitoring heart activity (electrocardiography or ECG), but it can also be used for monitoring brain activity (electroencephalography or EEG) or arterial pressure. Its extended recording period is sometimes useful for observing occasional cardiac arrhythmias or epileptic events which would be difficult to identify in a shorter period of time. For patients having more transient symptoms, a cardiac event monitor which can be worn for a month or more can be used. The Holter monitor is named after physicist Norman J. Holter, who invented telemetric cardiac monitoring in 1949. Clinical use started in the early 1960s.
When used for the heart, (much like standard electrocardiography) the Holter monitor records electrical signals from the heart via a series of electrodes attached to the chest. Electrodes are placed over bones to minimize artifacts from muscular activity. The number and position of electrodes varies by model, but most Holter monitors employ between three and eight. These electrodes are connected to a small piece of equipment that is attached to the patient’s belt or hung around the neck, and is responsible for keeping a log of the heart’s electrical activity throughout the recording period.