Surgical interventions on the heart require high qualification and experience of the doctor, as well as good equipment in the hospital. Only in this case they will be quite safe and will allow the doctors to restore the patient's health without significant risks. Many patients visit European hospitals in order to receive medical care in cardiac surgery. Surgery is preceded by a thorough diagnostics is using laboratory tests and instrumental techniques aimed at the assessment of heart muscle function, heart structure and its blood supply.
It is a basic examination in cardiology and cardiac surgery. The electrocardiogram produces the trace, which shows the electrical activity of the heart. Using ECG, the doctors can detect signs of myocardial hypertrophy, its insufficient blood supply and determine many types of arrhythmias. It also serves for the assessment of the main cardiac functions, such as excitability, conductivity, automatism.
24-hour Holter monitoring is a similar examination, but more informative, because the ECG takes a long time. The diagnostics usually lasts from 12 to 48 hours. The purpose of this procedure is to record episodes of cardiac arrhythmias in the case of their inconstancy, to detect irregularities in heart muscle functioning at different times of the day and to detect episodes of myocardial ischemia. Holter monitoring allows the doctors to assess the effectiveness of artificial pacemaker or antiarrhythmic drugs.
During the examination process, the patient leads an ordinary way of life. Therefore, the electrical activity of the heart is examined under various conditions, such as stress, physical activity, smoking, caffeine intake, pain, sleep, etc. All these features are recorded by the patient, and then the doctor looks under which conditions and how the formation of ECG trace is changing.
It is mainly used in order to detect silent myocardial ischemia, which does not occur at rest. The higher the level of physical activity, the more cardiac muscle requires oxygen. Stress ECG allows the doctors to determine whether the current state of the vessels meets this necessity, or if in increased necessity for oxygen, the myocardium does not receive enough blood.
Stress ECG allows the doctors to assess physical reserves, evaluate working capacity in patients with coronary heart disease and determine latent types of the following disorders:
- arterial hypertension;
- adaptive metabolic disorders.
In the case of pathology, the ECG will show changes in the repolarization phase, transient (temporary) blockades and other types of heart rhythm disorders.
The Departments of Cardiac Surgery apply various stress tests. These include:
- step test – ECG after climbing stairs;
- treadmill test – treadmill with a varying angle of elevation;
- bicycle ergometer test – the patient works on fitness bicycle with a gradually increasing load.
Stress ECG has many contraindications. Therefore, the doctor always examines the patient after this diagnostics.
24-hours blood pressure monitoring allows to exclude the unreasonable prescription of antihypertensive therapy in the case of situational increase in blood pressure, which often occurs during the appointment ("white coat hypertension"). Blood pressure is determined in various situations (stress, physical activity, time of day). This information often allows to suggest the cause of hypertension, especially in young patients.
This is an ultrasound diagnostic technique. The scanning can reveal both structural and functional heart disorders. With the ultrasound technique, the doctor can detect many pathological changes, such as:
- intracardiac thrombi;
- vascular aneurysms;
- areas of cardionecrosis;
- ventricular contractility disorders;
- venous stasis in systemic circulation;
- congenital and acquired valvular heart diseases;
- expansion of the heart chambers.
The scanning allows to assess myocardial viability after a heart attack, to reveal signs of pulmonary hypertension, to diagnose heart tumors.
An ultrasound scan of the heart muscle after exercise is used as an alternative to ECG in order to detect signs of myocardial ischemia in the following cases:
- doubtful results of a cardiogram;
- initial gross changes on the ECG, which do not allow to adequately interpret the results of stress test.
During the scan, the doctor may notice that the part of the myocardium, which has poor blood circulation, does not reduce in time, lags behind neighboring sections. It is possible to reduce the strength of contractions or their complete absence (akinesis). Stress can be achieved not only by physical activity. The doctors achieve a similar effect by administering drugs or transesophageal electrical stimulation of the atria.
It is an invasive method, which allows the doctors to obtain an X-ray image of the coronary arteries after their contrast enhancement. This is the most accurate method for the diagnostics of coronary heart disease. It determines the area of narrowing of the coronary arteries, allows the doctor to detect signs of destruction of the atherosclerotic plaque or intravascular thrombus formation.
Coronarography allows the doctors to solve the question of necessity for hospitalization of a person in a heart surgery in-patient clinic, performing myocardial revascularization operations. The examination helps the doctor to plan the surgical intervention.
Conventional X-ray does not provide a complete image of the structure of cardiac muscle and the degree of its impaired function. Computed tomography remains more informative than X-ray imaging. It is used not only for the diagnostics of heart diseases, but also during the process of their treatment. Many heart surgery hospitals perform the invasive CT-guided procedures and operations.
Diagnostics in the best European hospitals with the Booking Health company
You can use the services of the Booking Health company in order to undergo examination and restore health in the clinics specializing in cardiac surgery. We will select the perfect diagnostic program in a cardiac surgery hospital. Our company provides the following services and benefits:
- Selection of the best hospital with the doctors who demonstrate good statistics in the treatment of cardiac surgery diseases.
- Preparation of the program, taking into account the results of previously performed laboratory analyses and instrumental tests, without the need to repeat them within the in-patient Department of Cardiac Surgery.
- Reduced cost of examination and treatment due to the absence of overpricing for foreign patients.
- Booking the appointment with a doctor on the convenient date for you.
- Monitoring of diagnostic and treatment program at all its stages.
- Support during the entire period of stay in a hospital, solving accommodation issues, comfort, individual menu, etc.
- Control of costs of the diagnostic and treatment procedures, return of unspent funds after program completion.
- Buying and forwarding of medicines.
- Possibility of consultations with the doctors of the cardiac surgery hospital after program completion.
- Organization of additional diagnostic or treatment procedures.
We will solve all organizational issues, while you can fully concentrate on the restoration of your health. The Booking Health company provides you with high quality service. We will book a hotel for you, airline tickets, arrange a transfer from the airport and provide interpreting services.