It is believed at Apollo Hospitals that the first step to cure is accurate diagnosis of the disorder. Investment in the latest medical and diagnostic equipment along with upgradation of skills of personnel is always ensured.
The following are some of our Cardiac Diagnostic Services:
320 slice CT Scanner
The 320 Slice CT Scanner is the 7th of its kind in the world, and a first for India. It is available only at a few leading hospitals across the world. The 320 Slice CT Scanner can image the entire heart in a single rotation providing volumetric temporal resolution that is superior to multi-slice temporal resolution available today, resulting in clearer image quality. It shows not only whole organ anatomy, but also the changes in the entire organ over time resulting in a better, faster, more complete diagnosis. In addition, it can perform a comprehensive neurological examination providing arterial, venous and whole brain perfusion in a single study with both less contrast and radiation dose. It is especially helpful in identifying the level of heart disease in people with high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure but with few overt signs and symptoms. This facility is currently available at Apollo Hospitals Chennai.
64 Slice CT Angiography
64 Slice CT Angiography is a non-invasive procedure that helps in detecting minute blockages of the arteries of the heart. The images obtained through this procedure are sharp and crystal clear, enabling cardiologists to spot even the smallest of blockages at a very early stage. It is also used to determine the conditions of the stents and bypass surgery grafts of patients who have had angioplasties or CABG. Apollo Hospitals, India was the first in the country to introduce this sophisticated cardiac investigation. This facility is currently available at Apollo Hospitals Chennai and Kolkata.
Transesophageal Echocardiography (TEE) is used to determine whether a patient who has an abnormal heart rhythm is at high risk for stroke. The procedure also reveals any blood clots present in the heart.
Stress Echocardiography uses exercise or medication to make the heart work harder than when at rest. This helps us obtain more detailed pictures of the heart and how well or poorly it is functioning. Echocardiography assesses the overall function of the heart, determines the presence of heart diseases, follows the progress of valve disease and evaluates the effectiveness of medical or surgical treatment.
ELECTROPHYSIOLOGY [EP] STUDY
An EP Study is a specialized procedure conducted by a trained cardiac specialist, the Electrophysiologist. In this procedure, one or more thin, flexible wires, called catheters are inserted into a blood vessel (usually the groin) and guided into the heart. Each catheter has two or more electrodes to measure the heart's electrical signals as they travel from one chamber to another.
EP studies are done to diagnose your cardiac rhythm abnormality, to help determine the best treatment, and to pinpoint the site where therapy may be useful.
RADIOFREQUENCY [RF] CATHETER ABLATION
After an EP study, RF catheter is inserted into a blood vessel and guided into the heart to pinpoint the source of the abnormal electrical signals. These catheters used to deliver a low-voltage, high-frequency current that destroys the heart tissue responsible for the arrhythmia. Majority of the patients who have undergone catheter ablation experience either: (a) return to normal heart rhythm, or (b) long term reduction in the number of episodes of arrhythmia and the severity of symptoms.
This means that medicines for controlling heart rate or rhythm may be stopped or reduced following successful catheter ablation.
3D MAPPING SYSTEM [CARTO 3]
Apollo Hospitals Chennai is the first hospital in the country to get the latest 3D mapping technology in arrhythmia management. The latest technology [CARTO 3 System] gives the three-dimensional view of the patient's heart which helps the Electrophysiologist to identify the site of origin of the abnormal rhythm accurately and deliver the Radiofrequency catheter ablation therapy with high success rate.
The benefits of the curative catheter ablation therapy are mentioned below.
- Better Quality of Care: Most cardiac arrhythmias can be treated and cured by catheter ablation thereby eliminating the need for life-long therapy.
- Better Quality of Life: Catheter Ablation can restore the quality of life of the patient leading to a happier family life and improved productivity at workplace.
- Saves Lives: Some life-threatening Ventricular Arrhythmias can be successfully treated with catheter ablation thereby providing patients with an option to live.
- Cost-effective : The overall lifecycle costs of care for the patient may be reduced due the curative nature of catheter ablation therapy. Alternative device therapies can be more than five times costlier.
Catheter ablation is considered safe and is not associated with a significant risk, so the chance of experiencing complications is low. And it is a keyhole procedure which allows the patient to get back to their work soon after the procedure.
COMMON ARRHYTHMIAS TREATED WITH RF ABLATION
Supraventricular Tachycardia - Paroxysmal Supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT) generally describes the rapid beating of the heart originating from upper chambers. Most common forms of SVT include atrioventricular node reentry (AVNRT), atrioventricular reentry (AVRT), and focal atrial tachycardia.
Atrial Flutter - Atrial flutter (AFL) is a rapid beating the upper chambers, the atria. AFL is characterized by a fast, very regular atrial rate (close to 300 beats a minute). AFL can also lead to pooling of the blood in the atria that can cause an increased risk of blood clot formation and elevated risk for stroke.
Atrial Fibrillation - Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common heart rhythm disorder. AF is the chaotic quivering of the upper chambers of the heart, the atria. This quivering reduces the efficiency of the heart and can lead to a rapid heart rate. In addition to rate problems, AF causes blood to pool in parts of the atria that increases the risk of forming clots that could lead to a stroke.
Ventricular Tachycardia - Ventricular tachycardia (VT) is the rapid beating of the two lower chambers of the heart. VT is can be a life threatening arrhythmia if not treated.