Your heart is a muscle that gets energy from blood carrying oxygen and nutrients. Having a constant supply of blood keeps your heart working properly. Most people think of heart disease as one condition. But in fact, heart disease is a group of conditions affecting the structure and functions of the heart and has many root causes. Coronary artery disease, for example, develops when a combination of fatty materials, calcium and scar tissue (called plaque) builds up in the arteries that supply blood to your heart (coronary arteries). The plaque build up narrows the arteries and prevents the heart from getting enough blood.
Medpoint is pleased to have Dr. David Massel, Dr. Eli Rosenberg and Dr. Mike Goddard (Cardiologists) as visiting specialist to Medpoint on a weekly basis.
In addition to having these specialists on site Medpoint also can do Stress tests, Echocardiograms, ECG’s and hook up Holter monitors.
What is a Stress Test?
A cardiac stress test is a medical test that indirectly reflects arterial blood flow to the heart during physical exercise. When compared to blood flow during rest, the test reflects imbalances of blood flow to the heart’s left ventricular muscle tissue – the part of the heart that performs the greatest amount of work pumping blood.
The patient either walks on a treadmill or is given an intravenous (IV) medication that simulates exercise while connected to an electrocardiogram (ECG) machine, usually with the standard 10 connections used to record a 12-lead ECG. The level of exercise is increased in 3-minute stages of progressively increased grade (% incline) and speed (mph, km/h, etc.). The patient’s symptoms and blood pressure response are repeatedly checked. When using ECG and blood pressure monitoring alone the test is variously called a cardiac stress test, exercise stress test, exercise treadmill test, exercise tolerance test, stress test or exercise ECG test.
What is an echo?
An echocardiogram, often referred to in the medical community as a 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). Also known as a cardiac ultrasound, it uses standard ultrasound techniques to image two-dimensional slices of the heart.
Echocardiography is used to diagnose cardiovascular diseases. In fact, it is one of the most widely used diagnostic tests for heart disease. It can provide a wealth of helpful information, including the size and shape of the heart, its pumping capacity and the location and extent of any damage to its tissues. It is especially useful for assessing diseases of the heart valves. It not only allows doctors to evaluate the heart valves, but it can detect abnormalities in the pattern of blood flow, such as the backward flow of blood through partly closed heart valves, known as regurgitation.
By assessing the motion of the heart wall, echocardiography can help detect the presence and assess the severity of coronary artery disease, as well as help determine whether any chest pain is related to heart disease. Echocardiography can also help detect hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. 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.