At Spire Bristol Hospital we have a range of heart assessments designed to help give you peace of mind. We offer a range of non-invasive cardiology investigations to help your consultant or GP assess the health of your heart. These include:
Electrocardiogram (ECG) - Electrodes are placed on your wrists, ankles and chest as you relax. These electrodes are then connected to a machine recording all the electrical signals from your heart. Analysis of the results can indicate any damage to the heart muscle. The test may also detect changes in heart rhythm as well as abnormalities in the signals themselves. Exercise ECG's work in the same way but you will be asked to exercise on a treadmill or exercise bike.
Blood Pressure Monitors - We may take your blood pressure during your assessment or you may be given a 24 hour blood pressure monitor. This the change in blood pressure with activity by measuring your blood pressure at intervals over a period of time.
Event Recorder - If you suffer from only occasional symptoms, this monitor is provided for longer periods of time in order to capture information regarding the event.
Pacemaker Checks - Ensures all pacemaker settings are optimised, to maximise battery life and help tailor functions to improve your quality of life.
Echocardiogram - Provides a specialised ultrasound scan of the heart to give a range of information including the size, function and pressures of the heart, as well as information regarding the heart valves. There are different types of echocardiogram available including Transoesophageal Echocardiogram (where a thin probe is inserted through the mouth to take pictures of the heart), Contract Echocardiogram (where a dye is injected to help pick up different pictures) and Stress Echocardiogram (where a microphone is placed on the chest wall to monitor the heart during exercise).
Tilt Table Testing - This test involves lying on a table and then tilting the table upwards, while you are connected to an ECG and a blood pressure monitor. It is used to test for causes of syncope or dizziness.
Spirometry - This is where you are asked to take a deep breath and then blow in to the sensor as hard as you can, for as long as you can. This measures the lung function.
Cardiac CT - This involves using a CT scanner to take pictures of your heart. It is used to get images of the beating heart and to look at the structure and function of the heart.
Cardiac MRI - An MRI scanner is used to take both still and moving pictures of your heart and major blood vessels. It is used to get images of the heart and to look at the structure and function of the heart.
Your Consultant or GP may suggest one or more of these investigations, so that he/she can plan an appropriate programme of treatment.