FAQs


GENERAL APPOINTMENT NOTES [Back to top]


Q. I am scheduled for a visit/procedure at the El Paso Heart Center, where is the office located?
A. The Center is located on the corner of Oregon St. and Rim Rd., across from Las Palmas Hospital. The office is on the third floor. Park in the open lot or in the parking garage across Rim Rd. Bring your parking ticket with you to be validated.

Q. What time should I arrive for my visit/procedure?
A. Please report to the office about 15 minutes before your appointment. If you are unable to keep your appointment, please call our office at 532-4542. Please call 24 hours in advance.

STRESS TEST/NUCLEAR STRESS TESTS [Back to top]


Q. I’m scheduled for a “Stress Test”, what medications should I take?
A. If you are taking a Beta Blocker such as: Tenormin, Inderal, Lopressor, Kerolone, Normodyne, Sectral, Trandate, Blocadren, Atenolol, Troprol XL, Cores, Metoprolol, Propranolol, Labetalol, Nadolol, Acebutolol, Timolol, Pindolol, Corgard. Please discontinue one day before the test. If you are taking any blood pressure medicine which is not indicated above, please take it with a small amount of water. If you are taking any asthma or emphysema medication (e.g. theophylline), please ask, as it MAY need to be discontinued 48 hours prior to the test. BRING ALL YOUR MEDICATIONS WITH YOU, ESPECIALLY YOUR INHALERS.

Q. I’m scheduled for a”Stress Test”, what may I eat and drink?
A. Please eat breakfast and lunch (do not eat any chocolate). Do not drink coffee, tea, coke, or anything with caffeine. Refrain from eating 2 hours prior to the exam.

Q. I’m scheduled for a “Stress Test”, what should I wear?
A. Wear clothes and shoes suitable for walking. The center is often cold; you may want to bring a sweatshirt to wear prior to the exam.

Q. I’m scheduled for a Nuclear Stress Test early the morning (7:00am – 11:00am), what may I eat and drink?
A. You may not eat or drink anything. You must be fasting as of midnight. On the day of the test DO NOT EAT, DRINK COFFEE, CHOCOLATE, or SMOKE.

Q. I’m scheduled for a Nuclear Stress Test in the afternoon (12:00pm – 3:00pm), what may I eat and drink?
A. Please eat a light breakfast; NO LUNCH. On the day of the test DO NOT EAT, DRINK COFFEE, CHOCOLATE, or SMOKE.

Q. I’m scheduled for a Nuclear Stress Test, what should I wear?
A. Wear clothes and shoes suitable for walking. The center is often cold; you may want to bring a sweatshirt to wear prior to the exam.

Q. I’m scheduled for a Nuclear Stress Test, how long will the test take?
A. The test lasts 4 to 5 hours.

Q. I’m a diabetic patient, are there special considerations that I should take?

A. If you are diabetic, eat lightly (cereal or juice, NO caffeine or decaf beverages) and bring your insulin with you. Please advise the technical staff that you are a diabetic patient.

Q. Are there other instructions that I should consider prior to my Nuclear/Stress Test?
A. Adhere to the following:

  • Do not exercise on the day of your test.
  • A good book goes a long way during the waiting time.
  • Bring a snack to eat during your visit; the technician will tell you when you can eat
  • If you are planning on going to Mexico, the Airport, or the courthouse within 48 hours of the exam, please let the technicians know.

  • Q. How do I obtain my results?
    A. A Cardiologist will study the images and EKG's, prepare a report and send it to your referring physician. This will take one or two days. Your follow up appointment to discuss the results may be with an El Paso Heart Center Cardiologist, with your referring physician, or over the telephone. You will have an opportunity to have any questions answered. PLEASE: If you have questions during the study. Feel free to ask anyone in the department.

    Q. I’m scheduled for a Nuclear/Stress Test, what should I expect?
    A. The two parts of the test consist of a STRESS study and a REST study. Either may be done first, this will depend on the type of exam you have been scheduled for. The stress test will require that EKG leads be placed on your chest to monitor your heart rate. A small dose of a radioactive tracer will be injected through an IV in your arm, and images of your heart will be taken. The stress will be explained and any questions answered before we begin. There are no side effects to the injection. However, if you think you are pregnant, or if you are breast feeding, please inform the technologist immediately. The rest study will consist of another injection of the radioactive tracer through the IV and a second set of images taken. There will be a break between the stress and rest portions of the test. This break may be as much as 1 ½ to 3 hours, depending on the type of study you are having. The technologist will tell you when you need to return and what restrictions, if any, there are for eating. The test may be completed in one day OR over two days. If you are scheduled to have the test over two days, the stress is done on one day and the rest is done on the other. IIt does not matter which is done first.

    ECHOCARDIOGRAM [Back to top]


    Q. What is an echocardiogram?
    A. An echocardiogram is a test that uses ultrasound waves to examine the heart. It is a safe procedure that helps doctor’s diagnosis a variety of heart problems.

    Q. How does it work?

    A. A transducer (small microphone-like device) will be held against the chest. The transducer sends ultrasound waves that reflect (echo) off the various parts of the heart.

    Q. What does it show?
    A. The echocardiogram provides important information such as:

  • - Size of the heart

  • Pumping strength
  • Existing valve problems
  • Detect the presence of fluid around the heart, existing blood clots or masses inside the heart and abnormal holes between heart chambers.

  • Q. How long does it take?

    A. The duration of the test is 20 to 40 minutes. However there may be occasions in which the test may last longer. If that does occur we would appreciate your patience, for our main goal is to obtain a high quality test to better serve you. No special preparation is necessary for this test.

    Q. How do I obtain my results?

    A. A Cardiologist will study the images, prepare a report and send it to your referring physician. This will take one or two days. Your follow up appointment to discuss the results may be with an El Paso Heart Center Cardiologist, with your referring physician, or over the telephone. You will have an opportunity to have any questions answered.

    PLEASE: If you have questions during the study. Feel free to ask anyone in the department.