The Multiple Gated Acquisition (MUGA) scan, also known as either equilibrium radionuclide angiogram or blood pool scan, is a noninvasive diagnostic procedure used to assess the heart by creating a moving image that evaluates the pumping function of the heart’s ventricles, the lower chambers of the heart. The procedure is performed by combining a radioactive tracer with red blood cells. This solution is then injected into the bloodstream. A special camera, called a gamma camera, will detect the radiation as it travels to the heart, creating the moving image of the heart. The MUGA scan is typically performed after a patient has either had a heart attack, cardiomyopathy or another heart condition to assess the degree of damage to the heart. The scan can be used to accurately measure how much blood is pumped from the ventricles with each heartbeat, which is helpful in monitoring the heart muscle.
A stress echocardiogram is a diagnostic test used to evaluate the strength of the heart muscle as it pumps blood throughout the body. Using ultrasound imaging, the stress echocardiogram detects and records any decrease in blood flow to the heart caused by narrowing of the coronary arteries. The test, which takes place in a medical center or in the doctor’s office, is administered in two parts: resting and with exercise. In both cases, the patient’s blood pressure and heart rate are measured so that heart functioning at rest and during exercise can be compared. The ultrasound images enable the doctor to see whether any sections of the heart muscle are malfunctioning due to a poor supply of blood or oxygen.
Peripheral Artery Disease Screening
Leg pain and numbness can occur due to blockages in the arteries of the leg. This is called peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Screening for these blockages in the legs is performed with a history and physical, and subsequently with ultrasound (sound beams). If a blockage is suspected to be causing your symptoms of leg pain or numbness, then you may be referred for a Peripheral Arterial Catheterization (angiogram).
Cardiology is the medical specialty that deals with all conditions of the heart and blood vessels. Make an appointment to meet our physicians in person to discuss your specific symptoms or cardiovascular issues.
A Holter monitor is a small, portable device that continuously records the heart’s rhythms and records the electrical activity of the heart. A Holter monitor may be used to capture information and check an individual’s heart rhythm if results of other tests, such as an electrocardiogram (EKG), have been inconclusive. The monitor is worn for 24 to 48 hours during normal activity, and it it records the heart’s electrical activity during that time period.
Extended Cardiac Monitoring
An event monitor is a small machine (about the size of a pager) that monitors your heart rhythm beat-to-beat in real time. It automatically detects irregular heart rhythms that may be causing your fainting, dizziness, chest pain or palpitations. Once a cardiologist finds out if your symptoms are coming from an irregular heart rhythm he may refer you to a heart rhythm doctor (electrophysiologist) to discuss specific treatment options.
For more information or to make an appointment for a cardiac evaluation. it’s about time!