Ankle Brachial Index Testing For Peripheral Arterial Disease
Ankle Brachial Index is a simple test which is done by measuring your blood pressure in the legs and arms and using the ratio to determine if you have peripheral vascular disease. The American Diabetic Association (ADA) recommends Ankle Brachial Index (ABI) testing in all diabetics older that 50 years of age. Peripheral Arterial Disease is highly associated with Coronary Artery Disease.
A holter monitor is a device that the patient wears for 24 hours which keeps a track of the heart rate and rhythm. It is used to detect irregular heart beats and to check for extremely slow or fast heart rates. A holter monitor is used to detect processes such as atrial fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia, sick sinus syndrome and premature atrial and ventricular beats.
An electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) is a recording of the small electric waves being generated during heart activity. The waves are registered by electrodes placed on certain parts of the body. The electrocardiogram is painless and is usually done when the patient is resting. However, if there is any concern that a patient's symptoms may be caused by coronary artery disease the test is done while the patient is on an exercise bike or treadmill. An EKG can be used to assess if the patient has had a heart attack or evidence of a previous heart attack. An EKG can be used to monitor the effect of medicines used for coronary artery disease. An EKG reveals rhythm problems such as the cause of a slow or fast heart beat.
The International Normalized Ratio (INR) is used to monitor the effectiveness of blood thinning drugs such as warfarin (Coumadin). These anti-coagulant drugs help inhibit the formation of blood clots. They are prescribed on a long-term basis to patients who have experienced recurrent inappropriate blood clotting. This includes those who have had heart attacks, strokes, and deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Anti-coagulant therapy may also be given as a preventative measure in patients who have artificial heart valves and on a short-term basis to patients who have had surgeries, such as knee replacements. The anti-coagulant drugs must be carefully monitored to maintain a balance between preventing clots and causing excessive bleeding.
Spirometry is a common office test used to diagnose asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and certain other conditions that affect breathing. Spirometry may also be used periodically to check how well your lungs are working once you're being treated for a chronic lung condition. Spirometry measures how much air you can inhale and how much you can exhale. Spirometry also measures how fast you can exhale. Spirometry values below average indicate your lungs aren't working as well as they should.