An EKG is a diagnostic tool that helps Dr. Panagiotou best identify any heart conditions you may have. When you get an EKG your heart’s electrical activity is monitored and recorded on a sheet of paper using staggered line drawings. While the EKG is commonly referred to as an ECG or electrocardiogram, there are differences in these testing methods. An echocardiogram uses ultrasound to measure your heart, while an EKG involves measuring heart electrical activity. An EKG is used to measure your heart’s rhythm so to diagnose an irregular heartbeat or damage to the heart muscle. It is also used to test for thick walls within your heart’s chamber that are a sign of diastolic heart failure. Dr. Panagiotou is one of the few cardiologists in the tri-state area that is designated by the American Society of Hypertension as a Hypertension Specialist.
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is caused when the blood in the heart is pumped too high against the artery walls. When you have hypertension your blood pressure will be above 140/90. If you have a blood pressure of 180/120 this is considered a medical emergency. Fortunately, hypertension can be successfully treated using lifestyle changes including less salt and more exercise. You may also be prescribed medication to bring your blood pressure down. Hypertension doesn’t always have symptoms. However, if left untreated hypertension can lead to heart disease and stroke.
Hyperlipidemia is caused by too high of a concentration of lipids, which are fat particles or triglycerides, in the blood. These lipids may also include cholesterol. When these particles become overly concentrated in the blood they stick together in deposits along the blood vessel walls. This leads to a restricted blood flow that can cause hypertension, high cholesterol, and even stroke. Hyperlipidemia has no symptoms. Routine blood tests every five years for normal adults is the best way to diagnose whether or not you have hyperlipidemia. It can be treated using lifestyle changes to diet and exercise. For some individuals, medication is the best treatment.
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