Liv Hospital Cardiac Imaging Department provides services with state-of-the-art equipment and expert staff in the field of cardiac imaging.

•   EKG/ Exertion Test
•   Echocardiography (2D)
•   Transoesophageal Echocardiography (Via Esophagus)
•   4D Echocardiography
•   Stress Echocardiography (Medicated And Stressful)
•   Carotid Doppler Examination
•   Early Diagnosis of Nonclinical Heart Contraction Disorders (Strain Imaging)
•   Thhalium Scintigraphy
•   Coronary Bt Angiography And Calcium Scoring

What is Echocardiography?

Echocardiography is the examination of the structure and functions of the cavities, valves and great vessels of the heart through sound waves. Echocardiography devices used in this method, which is basically based on the principle of ultrasound, are technologically advanced devices compared to ultrasound devices, since the heart is a mobile organ. Using an instrument called a transducer, which transmits sound waves, imaging is performed from various parts of the chest wall. Thus, the heart is examined from different angles and its structure and functions are examined. Since it is an ultrasonographic method, there is no risk for the patient, it does not contain radiation and it is a painless procedure. The application time varies between 15 minutes and 30 minutes depending on the disease.

Why Is Echocardiography Performed?

Echocardiography is often used to evaluate heart murmurs detected by listening during the cardiology examination, and to evaluate the structure and functions of the heart in patients presenting with complaints such as chest pain, shortness of breath, palpitations, and fainting. Thus, it is possible to evaluate the size of the heart chambers, the structure and functions of the heart valves, and the contraction of the heart. Evaluation of valve functions in patients with prosthetic valves is very important in examining cardiac functions and heart wall movements in patients who have had balloon or stented coronary arteries and those who have undergone coronary bypass surgery. In patients with rhythm disorders, echocardiography is also performed to investigate the presence of clots in the heart, to diagnose congenital heart defects and to diagnose heart tumors. In addition, it is used to determine the amount and importance of the fluids collected around the heart and to examine the diseases of the great vessels coming out of the heart.

What is Transesophageal Echocardiography?

In some cases where transthoracic echocardiography from the chest wall is insufficient, echocardiographic examination is performed through the esophagus to examine the heart more closely and in detail. This examination is similar to gastric endoscopy. In our center, this procedure is performed by putting the patient to a light level of sleep for the purpose of patient comfort, safety and a better examination. Thus, the patient does not feel any discomfort associated with the procedure during the procedure.

Why is Transesophageal Echocardiography Performed?

If findings in favor of clot, mass or infection in the heart are detected in the imaging of the chest wall, TEE should be performed for detailed examination of these. Detailed examination of prosthetic valves, diagnosis of congenital heart holes and other heart defects should be used when dilation or rupture of the aorta, the main artery, is suspected. If the patient cannot be adequately visualized by transthoracic echoradiography due to obesity, lung disease or chest structure disorders, this method should also be chosen. This procedure is also used to guide the practitioner during valve repair and/or replacement in cardiac surgery and in valve replacement procedures performed via catheter and to increase the success of the procedure.

What is 4D Echocardiography?

Echocardiography devices used today are generally two-dimensional systems. Recently, 3D and 4D systems have been developed with the developing technology. It is not easy to visualize the heart, which is an extremely mobile organ, with basic ultrasonographic systems. 3D echocardiograms show us the heart with a color and tissue quality similar to the image seen by the surgeon when the thorax is opened during cardiac surgery. The purpose of this method is to provide a better image quality, to provide a better examination, and to reveal some structural defects that cannot be clearly revealed by 2D echocardiography.

Why is 4-Dimensional Echocardiography Performed?

It gives more detailed information than 2-dimensional echocardiography, especially in the examination of intracardiac tumors, clots, holes and other structural disorders, and in the evaluation of natural and prosthetic valve diseases. It is important in making decisions about repairing natural but sick valves during surgery or replacing them completely with prosthetic valves. Again, 3D echocardiography is superior to 2D echocardiography in the decision of whether to close the heart holes surgically or through a catheter. In Liv Hospital, a 4-dimensional echocardiography device is used that can perform 3D examination live and during the procedure. With the 4-dimensional echocardiography device, heart imaging can be performed safely both from the chest wall and through the esophagus.

What is Stress Echocardiography?

Stress echocardiography is an echocardiography application performed with exercise methods or drugs that accelerate the heartbeat. Exercise echocardiography is performed on a treadmill or bicycle. After the patient is exercised within the appropriate protocols, the necessary heart images are recorded by echocardiography and these images are compared with the images taken during rest. In cases where the exercise ECG test cannot be performed (leg vascular disease, muscle bone structure limitation), medicated stress echocardiography is performed with the use of drugs that will increase heart rhythm and contraction, such as dobutamine, adenosine, dipyridamole, at certain time intervals, in increasing doses.

Why is Stress Echocardiography Performed?

Permanent pacemaker is an alternative method that is preferred when it is difficult to evaluate cardiac diseases with other methods due to left bundle branch block on ECG, left ventricular thickening and the presence of some special findings on EKG (pre-excitation). Stress echocardiography is most commonly used to detect myocardial perfusion disorder and its severity from acute heart attacks and coronary vascular structures. It is applied for the purpose of preoperative cardiac risk assessment in patients who will undergo surgical intervention other than cardiac surgery, in order to determine the risk after the interventional procedures.

How Is Carotid Doppler Done?

Stroke is a life-threatening disease that has common risk factors with a heart attack, which can impair the patient's quality of life, and can progress with sequelae ranging from speech disorder to loss of motor movement. For this reason, when examining patients for cardiovascular disease, it is of great importance to evaluate the carotid and vertebral artery systems, which are the main arteries of the neck and responsible for the blood supply to the brain.

Carotid doppler is performed with the help of a device based on ultrasonography, just like in echocardiography. It is a simple imaging test that does no harm to the patient. There is no radiation risk. Some findings in the neck vessels (such as an increase in the thickness of the vessel wall or atheroma plaque and stenosis…) may also be a guide for the heart vessels. Practically, it is inevitable for a person who has atherosclerosis in the carotid vessels to have atherosclerosis in the coronary vessels, the diameter of which is much smaller than the carotid vessel and feeding the heart.

Early Diagnosis of Heart Contraction Disorders

Conditions such as some diseases related or not related to the heart, drugs, previous infections, and radiation therapy may cause heart failure by causing damage to the heart, even though the patient seems completely healthy and has no complaints. This situation often cannot be demonstrated by 2D echocardiographic examinations used in daily practice. For the diagnosis of heart contraction disorders that are not reflected in the clinic, detailed examination should be made using high-tech devices and software programs. Echocardiography devices used in Liv Hospital have 4-dimensional imaging and strain imaging features and allow these analyzes to be made.

For whom is it important?

It is very important in the evaluation of patients who have received or will receive chemotherapy treatment for cancer. Unfortunately, while many cancer drugs kill cancer cells, they also damage heart cells. For this reason, it is recommended to perform a detailed echocardiographic examination of the heart before cancer treatment, and to repeat the heart examinations at the recommended time intervals in cooperation with oncology and cardiology. Thus, early recognition and treatment of harmful effects on the heart muscle is important in terms of preventing permanent heart muscle damage and heart failure that may develop in the future. Another advantage of these examinations is that, as a result of a detailed and meticulous follow-up in terms of the heart, the patient receives cancer drugs at the required dose and time without interrupting the treatment. Radiotherapy is another examination that can cause adverse effects on the heart muscle. Apart from this, some rheumatic and neurological diseases, hypertension, diabetes and some lung diseases can also cause heart muscle contraction defect.

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