Cardiologist In New Jersey
Common cardiology conditions include:
- Aortic aneurysm
- Cardiac arrhythmia (rhythm disturbances of the heart)
- Cardiomyopathy (weakened heart muscles)
- Carotid disease
- Congestive heart failure
- Coronary artery disease (clogging of the heart arteries)
- Heart disease
- Heart palpitations
- Mitral valve prolapse (MVP)
- Myocardial infarction (heart attack)
- Peripheral arterial disease (poor circulation)
- Valvular heart disease (disease of the heart valves)
Diagnosing Heart Problems
Using advanced cardiac imaging technology, we can perform an in-office EKG and do blood work to evaluate the health of your heart. If there is an abnormality, our cardiologists may order additional testing to confirm a diagnosis. Our providers perform echocardiograms, electrocardiograms, and a wide range of cardiac stress tests in our New Jersey offices.
United Medical’s ICAEL-Accredited Laboratory
United Medical has been granted accreditation in the area of adult transthoracic procedures by the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Echocardiography Laboratories (ICAEL), for all three of its locations: in Lyndhurst, Clifton, and Bayonne, New Jersey.
Accreditation by the ICAEL means that United Medical has undergone a thorough review of its operational and technical components by a panel of experts. The ICAEL grants accreditation only to those facilities found to be providing quality patient care. ICAEL is a "seal of approval" that patients can rely on as an indication that the facility has been carefully critiqued on all aspects of its operations in the field of echocardiography.
An echocardiogram, or “echo,” is a painless test that uses ultrasound imaging to create pictures of your heart. The test gives your doctor information about the size and shape of your heart, and how well your heart's chambers and valves are working. The test can also identify areas of heart muscle that are not contracting normally due to poor blood flow or injury from a previous heart attack. An echocardiogram can detect possible blood clots inside the heart, fluid buildup in the pericardium, and problems with the aorta.
Echocardiograms use sound waves to create a moving picture of the heart. The picture is much more detailed than a plain X-ray image – plus, an echo involves no radiation exposure. Occasionally, your lungs, ribs, or body tissue may prevent the sound waves from providing a clear picture of heart function. If so, the sonographer may inject a small amount of liquid (contrast) through an IV to better see the inside of your heart.
What Echoes Are Used For
Our cardiology providers may perform an echocardiogram to diagnose, evaluate, or monitor:
- Heart murmurs
- Abnormal heart valves
- Pumping function of the heart for people with heart failure
- Damage to the heart muscle in patients who have had heart attacks
- Infection in the sac around the heart (pericarditis)
- Infection on or around the heart valves (infectious endocarditis)
- The source of a blood clot or emboli after a stroke or TIA (transient ischemic attack)
- Congenital heart disease
- Atrial fibrillation
- Pulmonary hypertension
Types of Echocardiograms
There are several types of echocardiograms. Our cardiology providers will determine which echo is appropriate for you.
This is the standard echocardiogram. The procedure uses the same technology used to evaluate a baby's health before birth. A hand-held device called a transducer is placed on the chest and transmits high frequency sound waves. These sound waves bounce off the heart structures, producing images and sounds that can be used by the doctor to detect heart damage and disease.
This test requires that the transducer be inserted down the throat into the esophagus. Because the esophagus is located close to the heart, clear images of the heart structures can be obtained without the interference of the lungs and chest.
This is an echocardiogram that is performed while a patient exercises on a treadmill or stationary bicycle. This test can be used to visualize the motion of the heart's walls and pumping action when the heart is stressed. It may reveal a lack of blood flow that isn't always apparent with other heart tests. The echocardiogram is performed just prior to and after exercise.
This is another form of stress echocardiogram. However, instead of exercising to stress the heart, the stress is obtained by giving a drug that stimulates the heart and makes it think it is exercising.
The test is used to evaluate your heart and valve function when you are unable to exercise on a treadmill or stationary bike. It is also used to determine how well your heart tolerates activity and your likelihood of having coronary artery disease (blocked arteries), as well as evaluating the effectiveness of your cardiac treatment plan.
An electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) is a noninvasive test that is used to reflect underlying heart conditions by measuring the electrical activity of the heart. By positioning leads (electrical sensing devices) on the body in standardized locations, information can be learned about many heart conditions by looking for characteristic patterns on the EKG.
An EKG is usually performed as part of a routine physical examination. Your doctor may order this test if you have chest pain, shortness of breath, fainting, or palpitations. An EKG is a very useful preoperative workup for surgery in patients who may be at an age where heart disease is more likely.
What EKGs Are Used For
An EKG may be performed to identify:
- Underlying rate and rhythm mechanism of the heart
- Orientation of the heart (how it is placed) in the chest cavity
- Increased thickness (hypertrophy) of the heart muscle
- Possible damage to various parts of the heart muscle
- Evidence of acutely impaired blood flow to the heart muscle
- Patterns of abnormal electric activity that may predispose the patient to abnormal cardiac rhythm disturbances
The test takes about 5 minutes. It is painless and no electricity is sent through the body. In some instances, we may need to shave a small amount of a man’s chest hair to obtain optimal contact between the leads and the skin.
A stress test, also called an exercise stress test, is used to gather information about how well your heart works during physical activity. Because exercise makes your heart pump harder and faster than it does during most daily activities, an exercise stress test can reveal problems within your heart that might not be noticeable otherwise.
An exercise stress test usually involves walking on a treadmill or riding a stationary bike while your heart rhythm, blood pressure, and breathing are monitored.
What Stress Tests Are Used For
Our cardiology providers may recommend a stress test if he or she suspects you have coronary artery disease or an irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia). The test may also be used to guide your treatment if you've already been diagnosed with a heart condition, as well as to:
- Evaluate exercise tolerance when patients have unexplained fatigue and shortness of breath
- Evaluate blood pressure response to exercise in patients with borderline hypertension
- Look for exercise-induced serious irregular heartbeats
Types of Stress Tests
Types of stress tests include:
As long as you can walk and have a normal EKG, this is normally the first stress test performed. You walk on a treadmill while being monitored to see how far you walk. If you develop any chest pain or changes in your EKG, this suggests that your heart is not getting enough blood.
A cardiac stress test, or stress echocardiogram, is a graphic outline of the heart's movement. A stress echo can accurately visualize the motion of the heart's walls and pumping action when the heart is stressed. It may reveal a lack of blood flow that isn't always apparent on other heart tests.
This is another form of stress echocardiogram for people who are unable to exercise. A drug is given to make the heart respond as if the person were exercising. This way the doctor can still determine how the heart responds to stress, except that no exercise is required.
A nuclear stress test helps to determine which parts of the heart are healthy and functioning normally and which are not. A small amount of radioactive substance is injected into a patient’s veins. The doctor uses a special camera to identify the rays emitted from the substance within the body, which produces clear pictures of the heart tissue on a monitor.
These pictures are obtained both at rest and after exercise. Using this technique, a less than normal amount of thallium will be seen in those areas of the heart that have a decreased blood supply.
Treating Heart Conditions
Many patients respond well to medication and lifestyle changes to treat common problems with blood pressure, cholesterol, and clogged arteries. For more serious problems where an artery, vein, or valve is diseased or damaged, the use of a stent or other interventional cardiology procedure may be necessary. If you need an interventional procedure, our cardiologists can refer you to a specialist who performs these procedures.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Heart Disease in New Jersey
You should discuss any concerns you have about your heart health with your primary doctor, who can refer you to a cardiologist for further evaluation. If you have a history of heart trouble in your family, or if you have certain risk factors – such as smoking, obesity, a sedentary lifestyle, and high stress level – do not hesitate to seek the advice of a cardiologist.
Call the United Medical office nearest you in New Jersey for a heart evaluation: in Lyndhurst at (201) 460-0063, in Bayonne at (201) 339-6111, or in Clifton at (973) 546-6844. You can also request an appointment now.