Cardiac Testing Questions and Answers
Cardiac testing is available near you in West Bridgewater, MA. Our specialists at Bridgewater Primary Care & Cardiology are here to offer cardiac testing services to keep your heart in good health. For more information, call us or book an appointment online.
The heart is one of the most vital organs and works tirelessly to pump oxygenated blood throughout the entire body. Because it is such an important organ, if an injury, illness or condition affects the heart, it should be dealt with immediately. Cardiac testing refers to a number of exams that can detect several abnormalities of the heart and come in many forms, including electrocardiograms (EKG), exercise tolerance tests (ETT), and coronary angiograms, to name a few. These tests provide invaluable data about the heart and help individuals make health-centered choices about their life.
What is a cardiologist?
Cardiologists are doctors who evaluate, diagnose and treat patients with diseases and defects of the cardiovascular system, including the heart and blood vessels.
Cardiologists manage patients with conditions such as:
- Angina (chest pain from narrowing of arteries)
- Arrhythmias, also known as atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat)
- Heart murmurs due to heart valve disease
- Cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle)
- Heart failure including pulmonary edema
- Coronary artery thrombosis
- Myocardial infarction (heart attack)
- High blood pressure (hypertension) and high cholesterol
- Diseases of the arteries (atherosclerosis, arteritis, atheroma)
- Hole in the heart
- Other forms of congenital heart disease
What are cardiac tests?
Cardiac tests are diagnostic tests that check on the health of a person’s heart, arteries and blood vessels. They may include:
- Electrocardiography (ECG or EKG)
- Exercise cardiac stress test
- Cardiac CT for Calcium Scoring
- Coronary CT angiography (CTA)
- Myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI)
- Coronary catheter angiography
Why does one need to have a cardiac test?
Cardiac tests can help doctors find out if a patient is at risk for a heart condition, if they currently have a heart condition, and what treatment would be best for their situation. There are many heart tests. Most are non-invasive, which means that the doctor does not make an incision or insert a device into the body for the test. Many of the tests provide still or moving images of the heart and blood vessels, such as with echocardiograms. These tests help doctors find out what is causing new symptoms, such as chest pain, irregular heartbeats or shortness of breath. They can also help doctors:
- Check the heart’s electrical system
- Check pacemakers or other implanted devices
- See if a person’s heart can handle more exercise
- Check how well heart valves are working
- Look for structural problems of the heart
What are the different cardiac tests?
Different cardiac tests include:
- Exercise Stress Tests — Cardiac stress testing can help to identify partial blockages in the coronary arteries.
- Echocardiograms — An echocardiogram is a test for studying the heart’s anatomy using ultrasound.
- Carotid Duplex Ultrasound — A Carotid Duplex Ultrasound is a test that evaluates the blood flow in the arteries of the neck feeding blood to the brain.
- Nuclear Stress Tests — These tests are used to visualize blood flow to the heart.
- Electrocardiograms — An electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) is a quick, painless, noninvasive in-office test that records the electrical activity of the heart.
- Abdominal Aortic Ultrasound — An Abdominal Aortic Ultrasound is a test used to evaluate the aorta.
- Peripheral Vascular Testing — A Pulse Volume Recording (PVR) Test is a study that evaluates the blood flow in the legs.
- Holter Monitoring — A Holter monitor is a portable electrocardiogram (ECG) that monitors the heart’s rhythm for 24 hours.
If you require cardiac testing or have certain risk factors for cardiac disease, come to Bridgewater Primary Care & Cardiology today. Our kind and compassionate professionals are experienced providers of cardiac tests and can help you determine the health of your heart. Call us today at (508) 469-4626 to book an appointment, or visit our clinic conveniently located at 711 W Center St, West Bridgewater, MA 02379. Our office is open five days a week: Mondays & Thursdays from 9 AM to 5 PM, Tuesdays from 9 AM to 7 PM, Thursdays from 9 AM to 5 PM, and Wednesdays & Fridays from 8 AM to 5 PM. We look forward to serving you! We serve patients from Bridgewater MA, Taunton MA, Brockton MA, Mansfield MA, Stoughton MA, West Bridgewater MA, Easton MA, Plymouth MA, Weymouth MA, and surrounding areas.