Tests and Evaluations
At the University of Maryland Heart Center, patients have access to the very latest diagnostic technology. Various tests may be appropriate to confirm or rule out suspected causes of the arrhythmia. We offer multiple tests that reveal and differentiate the types of arrhythmia, including:
- Electrophysiologic studies to evaluate the conduction system and arrhythmia potential. To do the electrophysiology study, a cardiologist places the small wires in the veins of the leg and threads them to the heart to record how electricity moves around. Then the heart is paced in various ways in order to identify the abnormal heart tissue electrically.
- Tilt table studies: A test performed while the patient is connected to electrocardiogram (ECG) and blood pressure monitors and strapped to a table that tilts. This test is to determine if the patient is prone to sudden drops in blood pressure or slow pulse rates.
- 24-hour cardiac and event recorder monitoring: A small, portable, battery-powered ECG machine worn by a patient to record ECGs on tape over a period of 24-48 hours, or a monitor that can be placed on the chest to record the heart rhythm during symptoms. At the end of the time period, the monitor is returned to the doctor's office so the tape can be read and evaluated.
- Implantable heart monitoring to identify arrhythmic causes in people who pass out. The monitor sits under the skin and will record all tachycardias and bradycardias. It can record for about 1-2 years.
- Echocardiogram: A test that uses sound waves to produce a study of the motion of the heart's chambers and valves. It is used to evaluate the heart structure and function.
- Coronary angiography: A procedure in which a contrast material that can be seen using X-ray equipment is injected into one of the arteries of the heart. This allows your health care provider to view the flow of blood through your heart.
- Exercise stress tests (treadmill tests): A test that is given while the patient walks on a treadmill to see if exercise brings on changes to the ECG.
Please call if you would like to make an appointment or talk to someone about our services. Patients dial 1-866-408-6885, physicians dial 410-328-6622 or 1-800-318-1019.
This page was last updated: June 14, 2013