Cardiac Services

Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring

An ambulatory blood pressure monitor is a small unit worn on your arm that takes your blood pressure and records changes or fluctuations over a period of time (usually 24 hours). It is usually ordered for the evaluation of hypertension or hypotension and for the evaluation of blood pressure medication.

What to expect during the test:

A blood pressure monitor will be attached to your arm and a small recording device will be placed around your waist. The blood pressure cuff will inflate every 30 minutes on your arm during the day and every 60 minutes during the evening. You cannot shower or bathe while the monitor is attached to you.

How to prepare for the test:

There is no preparation for this procedure. However, please wear comfortable clothing with easy access to your upper arms. Please note: this test is not covered by OHIP and there is a $60 fee.

Echocardiography

This is an ultrasound of your heart. The walls, valves of the heart and blood flow are examined.

No preparation is required for this examination.

Holter Monitoring

A holter monitor is a continuous tape recording of the a patient’s EKG for 24 to 48 hours. Since it is worn during your regular daily activities, it will help your physician correlate symptoms of dizziness, palpitations or “black outs”.

What to expect during the test:

ECG electrodes will be placed on your chest and connected to a lightweight monitor that will be connected around your waist. You will carry this monitor around with you for 24, 28 or 72 hours, depending how long your doctor requested.

How to prepare for the test:

There is no preparation for this test. We recommend you wear comfortable clothing and so it is easy to dress after the monitor has been hooked up.

Vascular Ultrasound

This ultrasound is used to examine blood flow in arteries and veins.

This includes Carotid Doppler, Arterial Doppler of the Extremities (Arms and Legs) and Venous Doppler of the Extremities (Arms and Legs).

No preparation is required for these examinations.