DO YOU HAVE ATRIAL FIBRILLATION?
Atrial fibrillation is the most common abnormal heart rhythm that we see. It is characterized by an irregular heart beat. Your heart has a very sophisticated electrical system and when you develop atrial fibrillation, it basically means there is glitch in that system.
Your heart has 4 chambers and there is an electrical system connecting the chambers and making them beat. You are born with a pacermaker that sits in the upper chamber and makes it squeeze and that signal goes to the lower chambers and makes them squeeze. These signals going in the correct fashion makes everything in the heart beat in a synchronous fashion. When you develop atrial fibrillation, this synchrony is lost and what happens is the upper chamber is sending a lot of extra signals to the lower chamber and its making it beat a lot faster and irregular.
Symptoms of atrial fibrillation includes palpitations, shortness of breath, chest pain, swelling of the legs, heart failure, stroke and many more. Although atrial fibrillation is not fatal, it does need to be treated. The reasons to treat atrial fibrillation is because your heart rate should not be remain that fast all the time. This could eventually lead to heart failure. Some people never can tell they are in atrial fibrillation and it can be picked up by accident on physical exam. Another big problem with atrial fibrillation is strokes. When your heart is beating irregularity and not squeezing correctly, it allows blood to get stagnant in that chamber. When blood sits and doesn’t move, it can easily clot. These clots can go to the brain and cause strokes or even “mini” strokes. These events can be life changing for people and some may have long term consequences.
The treatment for atrial fibrillation first invovles controlling the heart rate. This can be done with medicines and or require an electric shock to the heart to reset things to a normal rhythm. The other part of the treatment is placing people on blood thinners to prevent strokes. These blood thinners could be as simple as aspirin, or involve more potent blood thinners such as warfarin or new products like xarelto, pradaxa or eliquis. The difference between the blood thinners is warfarin requires lab monitoring and also has dietary restrictions. The other blood thinners do not require any lab work and have no dietary restrictions. When compared to warfarin they are more effective as well in stroke reduction in the setting of atrial fibrillation.
Just remember that atrial fibrillation is very common and it is not deadly. The treatment is important to prevent complications from it. If you have atrial fibrillation and want our advice on anything related to your treatment, please do not hesitate to call us at anytime.
Do you have high blood pressure? Are you taking medicines and are you sure it well controlled?
Hypetension is a very common problem and is what we call in medicine the “silent” killer. Most people walk around without any symtpoms. Eventually it becomes so uncontrolled that their first presentation is a stroke. A stroke can be very life changing. It can lead to loss of quality of life and many changes. That is why it is so important to treat your blood pressure and have it well controlled. Other complications of high blood pressure includes heart failure, peripheral vascular disease, blindness and many others. Very common symptom of poorly controlled blood pressure is headaches that people believe is due to stress. Other symptoms include chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness and many others.
Blood pressure goal is usally to be less than 140/90 for most patients. Diabetics should actually be less than that at 130/80. Blood pressure may require more than one medicine to control. Sometimes when you are on multiple medicines and your blood pressure is still not controlled there may be other secondary causes to your high blood pressure.
If you have high blood pressure and you are not sure if it is well controlled, then I recommend you come visit with us and let us help you. We even have a nurse clinic that will allow you to get blood pressure checks and follow up on your medications. There are several cheap, generic medications that are very effective in treating your blood pressure and reducing your risk of all the complications of HYPERTENSION . Do not let such a simple thing lead you to have major life changing complications. We look forward to seeing you.
DO YOU NEED A STRESS TEST?
Do you have risk factors for heart disease? Are you having chest pain? Are you having shortness of breath out of the ordinary for you? Risk factors for heart disease include many things such as High blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking and many others.
Stress testing can be very helpful identifying whether or not you have any heart disease such as blockages in the arteries that go to your heart. There are several different types of stress tests. They all include EKG monitoring, however some include images and some are just done using the EKG. They all have advantages and disadvantages. However, depending on the patient, one type of stress test may be more suitable than others. Also, some people have difficulty walking on the treadmill for stress tests and therefore, we have alternative ways of doing the stress test without the need to walk on the treadmill.
The advantage to coming to complete cardiology care and having your stress test done is that we offer convienient Saturday morning stress test slots. We offer all types of stress testing including treadmill EKG tests, stress echocardiograms and nuclear stress tests.
Also, we are much cheaper than trying to do it at the hospital. Hospitals charges are higher and therefore, you deductible portion is higher. In the office, our charges are lower and therefore less out of pocket expense for you.
Has someone asked you to get a stress test? Or do you think you need a stress test? Give us a call and come visit us and will take excellent care of you. Will accomodate same day or next day appointments
ABDOMINAL AORTIC ANEURYSM
Do you have any of the following:
1) Family history of abdominal aortic aneurysm
2) Smoking either history or currently smoking
3) High cholesterol
4) High blood pressure
6) Male Gender
7) Age 60 or above
All these are risk factors for an abdominal aortic aneurysm. This disease causes the walls of your aorta which is the big vessel that runs down the middle of your body and gives off all the arteries that feed all the organs in your body blood, to become very weak and can eventually rupture if not repaired. If you have an aneurysm that is above 5.5 cm then it must be repaired.
Now at complete cardiology care, we can tell you the size of your aorta in just 3 mins with a simple ultrasound. It is covered by insurance as well. If you have any of these risk factors and want to check on your aorta, give us a call and come by.
I recently spoke at an event at St Lukes hospital in Sugar Land for womens heart. Check out the article in the fort bend star!
Do you or someone you know suffer from congestive heart failure? Are you constantly being hospitalized for fluid retention? Do you know the cause of why your heart failure?
Congestive heart failure is a very prevelant disease in the United States and worldwide. It accounts for a large amount of cardiology hospital admissions. Also, it accounts for many cardiology recurrent admissions. It is a very difficult disease not only to treat but manage at times. There are several different reasons for heart faliure. Understanding the cause of your heart failure can help in the management of your condition.
Your heart is like a pump and it is made of muscle that is similar to a an elastic balloon. That muscle is desinged to expand to let blood in and squeeze to pump it out to the rest of your body. Congestive heart failure is defined as either systolic or diastolic. Those two words are describing what has happened to the muscle of your heart. Systolic heart failure, is basically defined as the heart muscle becoming weak and stretched out. It means that the heart ability to squeeze is reduced. Diastolic heart failure is defined as the muscle becoming stiff and cannot expand like it used to. Although the heart function is normal, it is not able to expand well enough to let blood in. In either of these two situations, the increase in volume and pressure causes blood to go backwards and into the lungs, and all the way down to your feet.
Some of the causes of heart failure could be coronary artery disease, heart valve disease, poorly controlled high blood pressure and many others. Some times we do not have a cause. However, in the end evaluation and treatment require not only medicines but sometimes surgery to fix the problem.
People with advanced heart failure or recurrent episodes of heart failure that require hospital admission may require or be eligible for more advanced treatments such as a left ventricular assist device or even heart transplant. Other things that can be used is a device implanted in the pulmonary artery that can monitor the fluid status and allow your physician to montior whether you are going to need more diuretics to get the fluid off of you before you need to be hospitalized.
Heart failure is very complicated and requires a good evaluation and very close monitoring. Medical therapy is very important. If you or someone you know has congestive heart failure and you have suffered from symptoms on a regular basis or have required periodic hospitalizations for your symptoms, then make sure you come and see us for a good evaluation by our excellent team. We can discuss several options for your treatment and even new technologies such as the cardiomems device to help monitor your heart failure. Check out this video and come discuss with us whether this can help you.
Check us out in the news recently!
Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital Performs County’s First Hybrid Coronary Intervention
Hello everyone !
I wanted to let everyone know that we are extending our clinic to Bay City starting this Friday. If you know anyone in bay city who needs a cardiologist, let them know that I will be coming down once a week to see patients. Check out or ad in the bay city tribune. Look forward to serving the community.
Missouri City mom delivers ‘miracle baby’ at Methodist Sugar Land Hospital