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HEART SPECIALISTS IN YELAHANKA NEW TOWN BANGALORE Mitral stenosis Rheumatic mitral stenosis is rare in developed countries but is an important cause of maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality in many parts of the world. Mitral stenosis is often poorly tolerated because of the shortened diastolic filling period that occurs during pregnancy. A mitral valve area of less than 1.5 cm2) means a considerable risk to the mother of pulmonary oedema as pregnancy proceeds. Even previously asymptomatic patients are at risk. Close follow-up and regular echocardiograms are indicated. Treatment to slow the heart and increase the length of diastole (beta-blockers) should be commenced if symptoms (dyspnoea) appear or the Doppler echo measurement of pulmonary artery pressure exceeds 50 mmHg Diuretics may improve symptoms but for severe stenosis balloon valvotomy can be performed during pregnancy.30 There are risks to the mother and fetus associated with the procedure, which should be performed only at an experienced centre and only for severe stenosis. Aortic stenosis Delivery is usually well tolerated by women with aortic stenosis unless they are very symptomatic. If heart failure has developed, balloon valvotomy of the valve is safer than surgical replacement. The procedure provides temporary relief of symptoms. Mechanical prosthetic valves and pregnancy
THE BEST HEART SPECIALISTS IN BANGALORE Angioplasty Balloon dilatation of coronary artery stenoses was first performed in the late 1970s by Andreas Grunzig. The technique has undergone many refinements and is now widely used for the treatment of angina not responding to medical treatment. Angioplasty has not been shown to improve the prognosis of patients with stable angina. Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) has similarly not been shown to prolong life for most stable angina patients. However, both treatments are very successful in relieving the symptoms of angina. The COURAGE Trial compared optimal medical treatment of angina with angioplasty but excluded patients with symptoms refractory to medical treatment.1 Not surprisingly, this group of stable mild angina patients had a similar outcome with angioplasty and medical treatment. The trial suggests that compared with optimal medical treatment, angioplasty is a safe and slightly more effective treatment for stable angina. Patients can make an informed choice between these two treatments. The majority of patients treated with angioplasty in Australia have acute coronary syndromes and here there is good evidence of prognostic benefit with angioplasty compared with medical treatment. In many centres one-, two- and complicated three-vessel disease are managed this way. It has been shown to be as effective as coronary surgery for these patients but at the price of a higher rate of re-intervention. This is because the greatest limitation of angioplasty is the rate of restenosis in vessels that have been dilated. Restenosis
DIABETIC SPECIALIST IN YALAHANKA Syncope and dizziness The history Syncope is a transient loss of consciousness resulting from cerebral anoxia, usually due to inadequate blood flow. Syncope may represent a simple faint or be a symptom of cardiac or neurological disease. Establish whether the patient actually loses consciousness and under what circumstances the syncope occurs—for example, on standing for prolonged periods or standing up suddenly (postural syncope), while passing urine (micturition syncope), on coughing (tussive syncope) or with sudden emotional stress (vasovagal syncope). Find out whether there is any warning such as dizziness or palpitations, and how long the episodes last. Recovery may be spontaneous or require attention from bystanders. Bystanders may also have noticed abnormal movements if the patient has epilepsy, but these can also occur in primary syncope. If the patient’s symptoms appear to be postural, enquire about the use of anti-hypertensive or anti-anginal drugs and other medications that may induce postural hypotension. If the episode is vasovagal, it may be precipitated by something unpleasant like the sight of blood, or it may occur in a hot crowded room; patients often feel nauseated and sweaty before fainting and may have had prior similar episodes, especially during adolescence and young adulthood. The diagnosis of this relatively benign and very common cause of syncope can usually be made from the history. Patients with very typical symptoms rarely require extensive investigations. If syncope is due to an arrhythmia there is often sudden loss of consciousness regardless of the patient’s posture. A history of rapid and irregular palpitations or a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation in the past suggests the possibility of sick sinus syndrome. These patients have intermittent tachycardia, usually due to atrial fibrillation, and episodes of profound bradycardia, often due to complete heart block. Chest pain may also occur if the patient has aortic stenosis or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Exertional syncope may occur in these patients because of obstruction to left ventricular outflow by aortic stenosis or septal hypertrophy . Dizziness that occurs even when the patient is lying down or that is made worse by movements of the head is more likely to be of neurological origin (vertigo), although recurrent tachyarrhythmias may occasionally cause dizziness in any position. Try to decide whether the dizziness is really vertiginous (there is a sensation of movement or spinning of the surroundings or the patient’s head), or whether it is a presyncopal feeling. A family history of syncope or sudden death raises the possibility of an ion channel abnormality (long QT syndrome, Brugada syndrome or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy). Attempts should be made to find out what the diagnosis was for the affected relatives. A past history of severe structural heart disease, especially heart failure,
POPULAR CARDIOLOGISTS IN SAHAKARANAGAR Cardiomyopathies and valvular heart disease Regardless of the status of the coronary arterial tree, both primary and secondary heart muscle disease can produce anginal pain through the imbalance of the oxygen demand and supply. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a relatively common cause of angina in the presence of normal coronary arteries. Aortic stenosis is the most common valvular cause of exertional chest tightness, which is probably due to myocardial ischaemia Exertional chest pain, which may be due to right ventricular angina, is a feature of pulmonary hypertension . Syndrome X There is some confusion regarding the ‘metabolic’ and ‘cardiac’ varieties. The former is a combination of insulin resistance, obesity, pro-inflammatory state and so on, leading to raised cardiovascular risk in the sufferers. The latter is, or should be, a form of stable effort angina that can be ascribed to coronary microvascular malfunction.23 The epicardial coronary tree is normal and the diagnosis is rather difficult to make except by exclusion. Acute coronary syndromes The terminology used to describe acute coronary syndromes (ACSs) continues to evolve as clinicians attempt to adjust to the accumulating evidence of the usefulness of modern cardiac markers and the treatment implications of different results. The most recent terminology is designed to help with treatment decisions based on the earliest clinical information from the patient. This comes from the history and the ECG. When the patient’s symptoms suggest an acute coronary syndrome, the first decisions about diagnosis and treatment are based on the ECG. If there is ST elevation present in a pattern to suggest myocardial infarction, the diagnosis is of ‘ST elevation myocardial infarction’ (STEMI). If there is no ST elevation, the initial diagnosis is of ‘non-ST elevation acute coronary syndrome’ (NSTEACS).24 This elegant phrase has replaced ‘non-ST elevation myocardial infarction’ (non- STEMI). The reason is that the diagnosis of infarction cannot be made in the absence of ST elevation until cardiac marker estimations are available. The decisions about treatment, however, need to be made immediately and are based on symptoms and ECG changes.
ECHOCARDIOLOGIST IN GANGAMMA CIRCLE Mitral regurgitation A regurgitant mitral valve allows part of the left ventricular stroke volume to regurgitate into the left atrium, imposing a volume load on both the left atrium and the left ventricle. Symptoms: Dyspnoea (increased left atrial pressure); fatigue (decreased cardiac output). General signs: Tachypnoea. The pulse: Normal, or sharp upstroke due to rapid left ventricular decompression; atrial fibrillation is relatively common. Palpation: The apex beat may be displaced, diffuse and hyperdynamic if left ventricular enlargement has occurred; a pansystolic thrill may be present at the apex; a parasternal impulse (due to left atrial enlargement behind the right ventricle—the left atrium is often larger in mitral regurgitation than in mitral stenosis and can be enormous). All these signs suggest severe mitral regurgitation. Auscultation Soft or absent S1 (by the end of diastole, atrial and ventricular pressures have equalised and the valve cusps have drifted back together); left ventricular S3, due to rapid left ventricular filling in early diastole; pansystolic murmur maximal at the apex and usually radiating towards the axilla. Causes of chronic mitral regurgitation: (i) Degenerative; (ii) rheumatic; (iii) mitral valve prolapse; (iv) papillary muscle dysfunction, due to left ventricular failure or ischaemia.
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