A complete cardiovascular examination helps your doctor diagnose heart and vascular system conditions. It helps your doctor diagnose certain conditions early for effective treatment or prevent further complications. Dr. Daljit Muttiana can recommend a complete cardiovascular examination if you are experiencing chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness, or arrhythmia.
Additionally, a complete cardiovascular examination can be beneficial if you have a family history of heart or vascular issues, are overweight, or have high cholesterol or hypertension. The examination may involve physical evaluation and diagnostic tests. Below are common tests involved in a complete cardiovascular examination.
Electrocardiogram is a painless test that records heart electrical signals. It can help detect various heart issues, including irregular heart rhythms and coronary artery disease, causing chest pain or a heart attack. Your doctor can also recommend an electrocardiogram to detect if you had a previous heart attack or monitor how certain heart disease treatments like pacemakers are working. Electrocardiogram is safe because the electrodes do not produce electrical waves.
An echocardiogram checks your heart’s structure and function. It involves your specialist placing a hand-held wand that uses ultrasound on your chest to take images of your heart valves and chambers. An echocardiogram helps your doctor evaluate the pumping action of your heart. Your doctor can recommend the test to detect congenital heart diseases, cardiomyopathy, valve disease, infective endocarditis, or pericardial disease.
Vascular ultrasound creates detailed pictures of soft tissue and blood vessels using high-frequency sound waves. Doctors use this test to check how blood flows in your arms, neck, and legs. Vascular ultrasound can help diagnose atherosclerosis, blood clots, carotid artery disease, chronic venous insufficiency, deep vein thrombosis, peripheral artery disease, and deep vein thrombosis. Your doctor can suggest this test if you are experiencing a burning feeling in your legs, muscle atrophy, or leg ulcers that do not heal.
Nuclear cardiac stress test
A nuclear cardiac stress test helps diagnose heart disease. The test involves your doctor injecting a small amount of a radioactive substance known as a tracer into your bloodstream. Your blood vessels and heart muscle absorb the radioactive, making them more visible in pictures. Your provider then uses a special camera to take images of blood flow in and around your heart. Doctors mostly use nuclear stress tests to diagnose coronary artery disease. But the test can also show poor blood flow, locate blocked arteries, or determine whether your heart muscle is pumping well.
A stress test involves you typically walking on a treadmill or pedaling on a stationary bike while your provider monitors your heart activity using an EKG. This test shows how your heart works when working its hardest. A stress test can show how well your heart pumps blood or whether your heart is getting enough blood supply. It can also show if symptoms like shortness of breath, dizziness, or chest discomfort can be reproduced during physical activity.
A complete cardiovascular examination helps diagnose heart and vascular problems. It may involve various tests like an electrocardiogram, echocardiogram, vascular ultrasound, nuclear cardiac stress test, and stress test. Schedule an appointment at Cardiovascular Institute, P.A., for a complete cardiovascular examination to evaluate your heart condition.