A new cardiac diagnostic unit offers the full range of non-invasive testing to aid in the diagnosis of cardiac disease. The Hospital's Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) allows for the storage, retrieval, and immediate viewing of images by physicians both on and off-site and is incorporated into the patient's electronic medical record.
A variety of cardiac monitoring procedures are used by the Hospital's cardiologists to determine the cause of unexplained chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, fainting, or rapid, irregular heartbeats. These tests evaluate the heart's electrical activity, will indicate the thickness of the walls of the heart chambers, help determine how well medications are working, and provide other important data on the functioning of the cardiovascular system. Cardiac monitoring systems include:
- Signal average EKG
- Cardiac event recorder
- Holter monitoring
- Tilt table exam
Computed tomography (CT) is an X-ray procedure that uses a computer to produce a detailed, cross-sectional image of the heart. White Plains Hospital offers the newest cardiovascular imaging technology with 64-slice computed tomography that produces a rapid and undistorted image. This advanced technology provides physicians with a three-dimensional view of the anatomical structure of the heart, offering, in some cases, an alternative to cardiac catheterization.
The Hospital's state-of-the-art digital echocardiolography lab is accredited by the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Echocardiography Laboratories in echocardiography, transesophageal echo, stress echo and definity echo. An echocardiogram or echo is an ultrasound test that uses high-pitched sound waves sent through a device called a transducer. The device picks up echoes of the sound waves as they bounce off the different parts of the heart. These echoes are turned into moving images of the heart that can be viewed on a video monitor. The Hospital is able to collect and store all echocardiographic images and data as an electronic file, making it more efficient and timely for physicians to obtain reports and view images over the PACS system.
Nuclear Stress Testing
Nuclear stress testing evaluates arterial blood flow to the heart muscle and indirectly the amount of oxygen that will reach the heart muscle. A nuclear stress test measures blood flow to the heart muscle at rest and during stress using a radioactive substance that creates images of the heart muscle. Inadequate blood flow to any part of the heart will be indicated as a light spot on the images.
A Doppler ultrasound test uses reflected sound waves to evaluate blood flow through major arteries and veins of the upper and lower extremities. It can show blocked or reduced blood flow due to narrowing in the major arteries of the neck that could cause a stroke. It also can reveal blood clots in leg veins that could break loose and block blood flow to the lungs causing a pulmonary embolism. A transcranial Doppler ultrasound measures the velocity of the blood flow through the brain's blood vessels.