People suffering from heart disease and the various symptoms that can occur will need more than store-bought medication and rest for treatment. Seeking professional treatment from a cardiologist is the most effective method for receiving a direct and accurate diagnosis. At Orlando Heart and Vascular Center, we strive to provide patients with the most ideal treatment for their needs, helping them find long-term pain relief from their condition.
Benefits of Electrophysiology Testing
One of the first steps in diagnosing a patient is to conduct tests on the heart to isolate the source of the issue. Since the heart has four chambers, each with their own purpose, along with ventricles, valves, cardiac muscles and arteries, it is not a simple organ to treat. One such exam we may conduct is an electrophysiology test.
We have the extra training, necessary tools and professional experience to pinpoint the cause of the heart problem with precision.
Some people assume that any heart condition is treatable with store-bought medications they can buy right off the shelf. While these may provide some small amount of symptom relief, they rarely provide the necessary treatment patients need. With an electrophysiology test, we can record the electrical pathways of the heart.
This test will help us:
- Identify the cause of an irregular heartbeat
- Determine if medication is the most effective treatment option
- Determine if an implantable cardioverter/defibrillator is necessary
- Track the success of the overall treatment
- To perform an efficient and mostly painless procedure
During the Electrophysiology
While an electrophysiology test can take anywhere from two to four hours, the patient will need someone to take them home after. The procedure will involve using a catheter in the groin area to feed it through the body to the heart. The patient will not need to worry since we will use numbing to ensure the patient does not feel any pain at the incision.
Preparing for the Procedure
The patient will wear a hospital gown and lie on a bed in one of our rooms. We will then attach an IV to the arm or hand to administer drugs that help the patient relax and become drowsy. In most cases, the patient will be nearly asleep but not completely. After shaving and cleansing the groin area, we will numb the skin with medication around the groin.
This way, the patient will hardly feel us inserting the catheter into the groin area. The incision location will typically be a few inches to the left of the genitalia. By inserting the catheter into a vein, we can thread it to the heart.
Testing during the Procedure
To measure the heart rate at normal and faster speeds, we will run a small electric charge through the catheter to increase the heart rate. This will allow us to better understand the heartbeat irregularities. The patient does not need to worry if the heartbeat irregularities occur.
In some instances, we may even administer medication through the IV to see which ones are effective in controlling it. We can also help return the heartbeat to normal if necessary. We will attempt to determine the location of the arrhythmia and eliminate the specific cause of the irregularity to improve the patient’s overall health.
While this procedure is known as catheter ablation, it is not always the most effective course of action for treatment. If it is, we will most likely perform the procedure right then and there. Otherwise, we will record our findings to examine them more closely and determine the cause.
After the Procedure
After removing the catheter and ensuring there is no bleeding in the area, we will help the patient come to after the effects of the sedation wear off. Even though the patient may not be asleep during the procedure, they may still feel a bit groggy at first. The patient will most likely need to remain on bedrest for at least an hour or two before leaving. This is why the patient needs to have someone else who can drive them home.
Continuing the Treatment
No matter what the cause of the heartbeat irregularity is, we will recommend the specific treatment to meet the patient’s needs. Along with our treatment, we may recommend dietary, exercise and lifestyle changes to further the recovery and help boost the patient’s overall health.
To begin receiving the treatment for your heart issue or to determine what is causing your heart issue, contact us and schedule an appointment today. We can help you get on the path toward healing and recovery.
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