Women and Heart Disease Diagnosis

It’s likely your physician will start your diagnosis with a conversation about your personal and family medical history, symptoms and a physical exam. Then the tests you'll need to diagnose your heart disease depend on what condition your doctor thinks you might have.

Diagnosing Women and Heart Disease at Fletcher Allen

Fletcher Allen’s cardiologists, doctors specializing in heart problems, are specially trained in advanced technology to diagnose women and heart disease.

  • Echocardiogram is a noninvasive test using ultrasound waves to evaluate your heart’s structure and blood flow.  A computer translates the ultrasound waves into an image of your heart.  The image is displayed on a monitor, and it can be recorded on videotape or printed on paper.
  • EKG or ECG (Electrocardiogram) is a painless test using patches with wires (called electrodes) attached to your chest to measure your heart’s electrical impulses.  The electrodes are hooked up to a machine that displays or prints your heart’s electrical activity.
  • Cardiac catheterization and biopsy is a procedure where a thin flexible tube (cardiac catheter) is inserted in your groin (femoral artery).  Then the catheter is threaded through your blood vessels to your heart, where a small tissue sample (biopsy) is removed for later analysis in the laboratory.  Also, this test can measure how forcefully blood pumps through the chambers of your heart, and can take pictures of the heart’s arteries (coronary angiogram) to see if you have any blockage.
  • Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a diagnostic imaging technique that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to make images of your heart.
  • Cardiac computed tomography (CT)
  • Holter monitoring uses a portable machine to record all of your heartbeats.
  • Blood tests help your doctor determine the cause of your symptoms.
  • Chest X-ray is a picture of the chest that shows your heart, lungs, airway, blood vessels, and lymph nodes.

Learn about women and heart disease treatment.

Find a Fletcher Allen physician or call 802-847-4600.