Non-Invasive Procedures are exams that do not require an introduction into the body. The procedures available at Ohio Valley Hospital (OVH) help our doctors better understand their patients’ conditions and introduce treatments that may prevent a heart attack.
An electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG), a painless test in which sensors are affixed to your chest, helps your doctor understand and monitor your heart’s health. It is a snapshot of your heart’s electrical activity that can determine the cause of chest pain, or other symptoms related to heart disease, like shortness of breath, dizziness, fainting, or an irregular heartbeat.
A Holter monitor continuously records a patient’s EKG for a 24-hour period. Worn during regular daily activities, it helps your doctor correlate symptoms of dizziness, palpitations, or black outs with your heart’s electrical activity.
An echocardiogram uses sound waves to create a moving picture of your heart. While completely non-invasive, it allows your doctor to peer into your heart to monitor how well it is working, and to diagnose problems that should be addressed to prevent heart attack.
The stress test involves walking on a treadmill or pedaling a stationary bike at increasing levels of difficulty while your electrocardiogram, heart rate, and blood pressure are monitored. It helps to determine if there is adequate blood flow to your heart during strenuous activity, tests the effectiveness of medications or procedures that may have been performed, and tells your doctor if further evaluation is needed.