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Diagnostic services

One of the first steps to the cardiac care you need is getting an accurate diagnosis. Novant Health Cardiology offers many diagnostic tests to help your provider understand your cardiac concern so any needed treatment can begin promptly. Diagnostic tests include:

Electrocardiogram

An electrocardiogram (EKG) uses electrodes to measure the electrical signals that control the rhythm of your heart. An electrocardiogram can show evidence of heart enlargement or an electrolyte imbalance, signs of insufficient blood flow to the heart and heart rhythm problems.

Electrocardiograms are available at all Novant Health Cardiology locations.

Holter and arrhythmia event monitoring

Ambulatory electrocardiography monitors the electrical activity of your heart during daily activities. The most common system for this type of recording is called a Holter monitor. The recording device is worn on your waist or over your shoulder, and is attached by wires to electrodes on your chest. You will be asked to keep a diary of your activities so results can be matched up to daily activities. This is a good way for your cardiologist to detect arrhythmias or other heart abnormalities.

Holter and arrhythmia event monitoring is available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Clemmons, Eden, Elkin, Galax, Kernersville, Mt. Airy, Thomasville, Winston-Salem and Winston-Salem Health Care.

Exercise treadmill testing

This test looks for a blockage or signs of heart disease while a patient exercises on a treadmill. An electrocardiogram records heart activity and a blood pressure machine monitors blood pressure during the test. Your well-being is monitored closely throughout the test.

Exercise treadmill testing is available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Clemmons, Eden, Elkin, Galax, Kernersville, Mt. Airy, Thomasville, Winston-Salem and Winston-Salem Health Care.

Nuclear stress imaging

Nuclear stress imaging involves monitoring of heart rhythms and functions while at rest or before, during and after exercise. This test involves the injection of an isotope so images of your heart can be recorded on computerized gamma cameras. The camera "sees" the isotope as it travels through your heart.

Nuclear stress imaging is available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Galax, Mt. Airy, Thomasville and Winston-Salem.

Cardiac echocardiogram

An echocardiogram, or echo, uses sound waves to evaluate the structure and function of the heart. A sonography technician performs the painless exam using a device called a transducer on your chest. Your cardiologist reads and interprets the results.

Cardiac echocardiograms are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Clemmons, Eden, Elkin, Galax, Kernersville, Mt. Airy, Thomasville, Winston-Salem and Winston-Salem Health Care.

Stress echocardiogram

Performed much like a cardiac echocardiogram, a stress echocardiogram looks at the heart when it under stress from activity as opposed to when a patient is lying still. Images are collected before, after and occasionally during exercise.

Stress echocardiograms are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Clemmons, Eden, Elkin, Galax, Kernersville, Mt. Airy, Thomasville, Winston-Salem and Winston-Salem Health Care.

Transesophageal echocardiogram

Like a cardiac echocardiogram, a transesophageal echocardiogram uses sound waves to evaluate the heart's structure and function. In this test, the transducer that emits the sound waves is put down the esophagus. This creates clearer images of the heart by allowing the transducer to get closer to the heart where lungs and bones do not interfere with the images.

Patients in need of transesophageal echocardiograms will have that testing performed at one of the following convenient hospital facilities: Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center, Novant Health Thomasville Medical Center or Twin County Regional Hospital in Galax.

Lipid/cholesterol assessment

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance found in the blood that helps build cells and produce hormones. If there is too much of it, it can collect in the arteries forming a substance called plaque which restricts blood flow. Cholesterol travels through the blood attached to a protein. This unit is called a lipoprotein, or lipid. A simple blood test can measure cholesterol and lipids in the blood, and can detect a lipid disorder, measure the effects of a cholesterol-lowering medication, or to evaluate a person's risk of heart disease.

Lipid/cholesterol assessments are available at all Novant Health Cardiology locations.

Ankle brachial index

Blood pressure is measured in the ankle and arm while at rest, and occasionally before and after exercise. This test is used to diagnose peripheral artery disease or determine how well a medication is working.

Ankle brachial index tests are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem. This testing is also done at Novant Health Thomasville Medical Center.

Pulse volume recording

Pulse volume recording (PVR) uses blood pressure cuffs and ultrasound waves to study blood flow in the arms and legs, and to look for signs of arterial disease. This may also be referred to as a vascular study. A significant difference in blood pressure between the arms and legs could indicate a problem.

Pulse volume recording is available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem.

Segmental limb pressure

This test uses ultrasound waves to study blood circulation in arteries in the arms and legs. Ultrasound waves bounce back in patterns corresponding with blood flow in the arteries. The resulting sound and graphic recordings can help your cardiologist pinpoint blockages or other concerns.

Segmental limb pressure testing is available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem.

Carotid ultrasound

This test produces images of the blood flow into the two carotid arteries. It can detect blockages in the blood supply to the brain.

Carotid ultrasounds are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem. This testing is also done at Novant Health Thomasville Medical Center.

Abdominal aorta ultrasound

This ultrasound examines the abdominal aorta and associated blood vessels.

Abdominal aorta ultrasounds are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem. This testing is also done at Novant Health Thomasville Medical Center.

Extracranial cerebrovascular peripheral ultrasound

This test uses ultrasound waves to monitor blood flow in the arms and legs, and identify potential concerns.

Extracranial cerebrovascular ultrasounds are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem.

Peripheral venous upper/lower extremities

This test examines blood flow to the arms and legs. This testing can detect circulation problems.

Peripheral venous upper/lower extremity tests are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem. This testing is also done at Novant Health Thomasville Medical Center.

Visceral vascular studies

Visceral vascular studies look at circulation to organs such as the kidneys or the digestive system. Both renal artery duplex and mesenteric artery duplex studies are types of visceral vascular studies. These studies can detect circulation problems causing pain or attributing to serious ailments including kidney disease.

Visceral vascular studies are performed at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy and Winston-Salem.

Aneurysm evaluation

An aneurysm occurs when an artery wall becomes weak and bulges outward. Aneurysms can be detected or analyzed using ultrasound, X-rays or CT scans, and necessary treatment can be determined.

Aneurysm evaluations are available at the following Novant Health Cardiology locations: Kernersville, Mt. Airy, Thomasville and Winston-Salem.

Electrophysiology studies

Electrophysiologists, or heart rhythm specialists, at Novant Health Cardiology are cardiologists with three additional years of training. They are able to implant pacemakers and perform non-surgical analysis of the electrical conduction system of the heart. Michael Drucker, MD, Lai Chow Kok, MD, Mark Mitchell, MD, and Bryon Rubery, MD, provide electrophysiology evaluation and treatment including:

  • Electrophysiology studies with potential curative treatment of arrythmias with radiofrequency ablation
  • Electrophysiology testing
  • Tilt table studies
  • Syncope evaluations
Electrophysiology studies are performed at our Winston-Salem location.

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Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.