New Millennium Medical Imaging, P.C. (718) 321-7100

Nuclear cardiology is a method of accessing physiological characteristics of your heart to evaluate heart function and screen for some cardiac disorders. This state-of-the-art diagnostic technique is non-invasive, meaning there are no incisions or equipment entering your body. Nuclear cardiology can assist in the evaluation of acute pain and help determine if a patient is experiencing a heart attack. Our Philips CardioMD system, sometimes referred to as a gamma camera, is capable of identifying segments of the heart and blood vessels with decreased or insufficient blood flow. This gives us a better idea of how your heart is functioning, shows the viability of the heart muscle, and allows us to recommend the best course of treatment.

How Do I Prepare For The Nuclear Stress Test?

You should not eat anything after midnight the night before your stress test. Sips of water are allowed on the morning of your test in order for you take your medication. You may need to stop taking certain medications before your nuclear stress test. Your physician will instruct you as to which medications you should stop taking.. You should bring your medication with you on the day of your nuclear stress test. Tell your referrring doctor if you are pregnant or have any allergies. We will ask you to remove metal objects like belt buckles, coins and keys. A technologist will be present to explain the entire procedure and answer any questions you may have.

How are the images of my heart captured? What is being studied?

Myocardial perfusion imaging studies are commonly performed to evaluate the blood flow to the muscle of the heart (myocardium). To acquire the images, the patient is given an intravenous injection of a small amount of a radiopharmaceutical, which accumulates within the myocardium. There will be two image acquisitions of your heart for your nuclear stress test. One image will be at rest, and a second image will be acquired after stressing your heart. Our nuclear Cardiologist will determine the appropriate stress test for your study. Stress tests are either performed on a treadmill, or pharmacologically. After consulting with you and your referring doctor, the decision of which type of stress test will be determined. During your stress test, electrodes are placed on your chest to monitor your heart rate and rhythm. A nurse will be monitoring your blood pressure throughout the stress test. Our state of the art nuclear gamma camera is used to acquire multiple views of your heart and allows our Nuclear Cardiologist to assess if your heart is in any danger of having inadequate blood supply.

After Your Exam

After acquiring both rest and stress images, you may resume your normal diet and take any medication you would normally have taken on the day of your nuclear stress test.

How long will my exam take?

The myocardium perfusion exam may take three to four hours. The ventricular function exam typically takes 90 minutes to two hours.