Common Medical Tests to Diagnose Heart Conditions

Common Medical Tests to Diagnose Heart Conditions

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, but determining whether or not you are at risk can be difficult. A heart attack, stroke, or other serious health events may be the first indication of trouble, but it may be too late. As a result, physicians have a variety of heart attack tests to help them understand the risk factors. Simple measurements and blood checks are among the heart tests available, as are more invasive procedures that may require anesthesia.


Physical Examinations

Heart disease doesn't always manifest itself in obvious ways. However, some symptoms can indicate an underlying problem.

If you have any of the following heart attack signs, you can see a doctor or go to an emergency room right away:


  • Chest pain

  • Shortness of breath

  • Sudden swelling in your legs, feet ankles, or abdomen

  • Fainting

  • Slow or fast heartbeat

  • Chest tightness


Otherwise, the annual medical test will likely include certain specific heart disease screenings.


These are some of them:


  • Bodyweight - Your BMI(body mass index) can be calculated by comparing your body weight to your height and waist circumference. Obesity, which is linked to a higher risk of heart disease, may be shown by a high BMI.

  • Electrocardiogram (EKG) - This is a quick test that measures the heart's electrical activity using electrical leads taped to your torso. It can detect a heartbeat that is erratic or damage to the heart.

  • Measurement of blood pressure - Since high blood pressure can lead to heart disease and stroke, this is one of the most effective heart disease checks.


Also Read: What Does Medicare Cover After A Stroke?


Blood Test

A variety of popular blood tests can also aid in the prevention of heart disease. When there are no other signs or symptoms of heart failure, these tests will reveal potential dangers.


  • Lipoprotein profile after fasting - Total cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol, HDL (good) cholesterol, and triglycerides (a form of fat) are all measured in this examination. A high level of LDL cholesterol increases the risk of heart disease and stroke.

  • Blood Glucose levels - Blood glucose is also known as "blood sugar." You're more likely to develop insulin resistance, prediabetes, and type 2 diabetes if your levels are high. Diabetes, if left unchecked, can lead to heart attack and stroke.


Common Medical Tests to Diagnose Heart Conditions


Also Read: The Importance of Diabetic Foot Care and How Medicare Can Help


Heart Disease Advanced Tests

If the results of the above tests show that you have a higher risk of heart disease, your doctor can recommend more advanced heart tests. This may involve the following:


  • Calcium in the coronary arteries - A regular CT scan machine is used to create a picture of your heart in order to determine how much calcium has built up in your arteries' plaque. Coronary heart disease is attributed to high calcium levels.

  • Heart CT Scan - A coronary CT angiogram is another name for this test. To slow your heart rate, you'll be offered a beta-blocker. The radioactive dye will then be injected into your arteries with an IV line. The dye will be tracked by a CT scan machine to highlight areas of the heart that aren't getting enough blood.

  • Cardiac catheterization - This is a non-invasive heart test. A flexible tube is inserted into a blood vessel in your groin or another part of your body and guided toward your core. It can be combined with coronary angiography, which involves injecting a dye into the blood vessels of your heart. An X-ray is then used to determine which arteries are narrowed or blocked.


Also Read: Medicare Coverage for Preventive Screening


  • Stress Test - This is similar to an EKG, except it's done when you're working out on a stationary bike or treadmill. It allows doctors to see how the heart reacts to stress.

  • Ultrasound of the carotid arteries - The carotid arteries on both sides of your neck are imaged using sound waves from a handheld wand in this test. The findings will reveal whether plaque is

  • forming in your arteries, which could lead to a heart attack or stroke.




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