Cardiovascular Services

Diagnostic cardiac tests and procedures

The Cardiovascular Institute offers many noninvasive diagnostic tests and procedures to assess your heart health. Having the right information, interpreting it correctly and understanding how it relates to your lifestyle can be a key to your well-being and save you from undergoing unnecessary cardiac procedures.

Diagnostic services

Our tests and procedures include:

Electrocardiograms or ECGs
This simple, painless ECG test records the electrical activity of your heart, including the timing and duration of each electrical phase in your heartbeat.

Noninvasive echocardiogram tests use sound waves to evaluate your heart’s chambers, valves and pumping function. The echo sound waves create an image on the monitor as an ultrasound probe is passed across the skin over your heart.

Transesophageal echocardiograms
During a transesophageal echocardiogram, you will swallow a small probe, about the size of a little finger. The probe passes down the esophagus nearer to the heart. It allows a closer look at the heart’s structure and function. It also shows any abnormal tissue around your heart valves, if blood is leaking backward through a valve, and if blood clots are present in your heart chambers.

Stress test (also called treadmill or exercise ECG)
This test monitors the heart while you walk on a treadmill. A stress test may be used to detect coronary artery disease or to determine safe levels of exercise after a heart attack or heart surgery. This test can also be done using special medicines that stress the heart in a similar manner as exercise does.

Nuclear medicine tests
single-photon emission computed tomography, or SPECT, scan of the heart is a noninvasive nuclear imaging test in which radioactive tracers injected into your blood take pictures of your heart. Doctors use the data to diagnose coronary artery disease and determine if you have had a heart attack. SPECT can show how well blood is flowing to your heart and how well your heart is working.

Vascular ultrasounds
A non-invasive vascular ultrasound procedure uses sound waves to assess blood flow in the arteries and veins. These waves produce pictures showing the vessels’ structure and function.

Cardiac CT scan (CTA)
The cardiac CT scan is an imaging procedure that uses an X-ray machine and a computer to create a three-dimensional picture of the heart. Sometimes a dye is injected into a vein so your heart arteries can be seen as well.

Holter monitor
For this test, you wear a small, portable, battery-powered ECG machine, or Holter monitor, to record heartbeats over a period of 24 to 48 hours during normal activities. At the end of this time period, you will return the monitor to the cardiology department or physician’s office so it can be read and evaluated.

Event recorder
For this test, you wear a small, portable, battery-powered machine known as an cardiac event record to record ECG data over several weeks. Each time you have symptoms, you press a button on the recorder to record the ECG sample. As soon as possible, you will transmit this sample to the doctor’s office for evaluation.

Tilt table test
tilt table test is used to determine if you are prone to sudden drops in blood pressure (orthostatic hypotension) or slowed pulse rates with position changes. You will be connected to an ECG and blood pressure monitor while lying down on a special table that tilts you from a lying to standing position.

Make an appointment

Take charge of your heart health and make an appointment today.