Echo tomorrow: So I am finally getting... - British Heart Fou...

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Echo tomorrow

CC62
CC62

So I am finally getting my echo tomorrow (still no idea about the angio) and wondered if those who have had one could could give me some idea about the process and what happens. I have a vague idea from what I've read but would like some first hand actual experiences! Should add I'm female so would like to know about privacy, not that I have a problem with baring all but would like to know beforehand!

33 Replies

Same as an ultrasound, you should be given a gown to wear or at least a towel to cover yourself with, then it's cold gel on and the scan is started, doesn't take long depending on what they see, I was told at the time what was seen and what the next step would be, I think mine was done and I was out within 30 mins.

CC62
CC62 in reply to bantam12

Thank you. I did wonder about the results, if they tell you or you have to wait for them, my x-ray results were sent to my GP and took a while for me to get them!

bantam12
bantam12 in reply to CC62

Depends on the sonographer, some will tell you the findings some won't but I've always been told what has shown up. If anything serious is seen then action will be taken sooner but otherwise it takes a while to get anywhere !

CC62
CC62 in reply to bantam12

So far I've had good results (x-ray) so if the echo is also ok I may be in for the long haul!

bantam12
bantam12 in reply to CC62

Yep

Snowflake20
Snowflake20 in reply to bantam12

Hi. Well this is just to say I have, literally, had so many done over the years, at different Hospitals here in Wales, and have never been told once by any of the People doing it what it shows up. Been told every time, the Results have to go to the Cardiologist and it is more than their Job is worth to tell you!

bantam12
bantam12 in reply to Snowflake20

Must be a different system in Wales then 🤷‍♀️

mike2002
mike2002 in reply to Snowflake20

Same experience for me. Long wait for someone to eventually get back with results (East Sussex).

Snowflake20
Snowflake20 in reply to mike2002

It is, I agree. The only time I have ever had the Results the same day is when I have had an Appointment with the Consultant himself. Today, though I have another Appointment with a different Consultant, the last one has gone to a new Hospital so, I really don't know. It's not until 4 oclock though. Firstly, have to get my Warfarin Levels checked at half 1. This is going to be a long day ha ha!!!

Cat04
Cat04 in reply to Snowflake20

Same here in South West of England- never told results at the time, get cardiologists report/appointment later (much!) I always ask for the echo's findings/report/measurements in writing so you can compare results over the years/from different hosps.

Same for me in Northern Ireland although last time when she said she was referring me back to the cardiologist I knew myself result wasn't great!

Yes that happened to me when she called in another Person. In a couple of days I had a Letter that Cardiologist wanted to see me. I have now had OHS, delayed owing to Covid but, nevermind, I am feeling so much better. Not great, but a big improvement as to how I used to feel! :)

I had OHS for AVR in November 2018 - I had no symptoms before diagnosis so was all a bit of a shock. Take care

Aww Thank You. You too!

I was given a gown for my top half, reclined on a couch, and a probe is run over and around the heart area. The gel is a bit cold, but it isn't painful, and takes 15-20 minutes. The lad doing mine explained what was going on, and compared the results with my previous scan.

Nothing to worry about, but don't wear your best top in case you don't wipe all the gel off!

All the best with it.

CC62
CC62 in reply to RufusScamp

Haha, that's a good tip, I shall dig out something not too smart!

Hello CC62,

Mine seems a bit different to those already posted. I am a woman, have one yearly after OHS, don’t have a gown top half bare, you lay down right arm goes above your head and hand holds a rail have had the same tech since before my surgery she puts the gel on and then does the scan. As someone as already said don’t wear good bra or top they do give you tissues to wipe the gel away but it does go everywhere. Because I have seen her so often, she as said every time looks ok see you next year! Hope it’s the same at my next one!

You will be fine, I lie there looking at my heart and saying to my pig’s valve just keep going please!

Pauline

bantam12
bantam12 in reply to 080311

That sounds awful, there's no need to have to lie there with it all on show, my Echos have all been done with the sonographer working under the gown, no problem at all.

080311
080311 in reply to bantam12

Never had it done any different, have had 5 done missed this last year with Covid-19 but always had the same tech, it’s a she so have never felt uncomfortable. She is quite chatty when she is doing the scan so I am very relaxed.

CC62
CC62 in reply to 080311

That sounds a bit 'all out there' and as you say, different to what others have said, maybe it depends on where it's being done. Would be fascinating to look at my heart!

080311
080311 in reply to CC62

It’s just something I have got used to, the girl who does it as done all 5 from before I had my surgery so not a problem for me. Looking at my heart is quite a thrill and I say in my mind to my replacement valve just keep going please!Take care

Pauline

nursenancy53
nursenancy53 in reply to 080311

Hi PaulineJust a query, have you had an echo annually since your op? I'm into my 3rd year post surgery and haven't any!

080311
080311 in reply to nursenancy53

Afternoon,

Yes have had one yearly up to the pandemic not had one since summer of 2019, believe there is a real backlog. I am in Scotland.

They check the valve it’s a tissue one, to see the pressure it’s pushing out. That’s what I have been told. It’s been good or it was up to my last one!

Pauline

nursenancy53
nursenancy53 in reply to 080311

Thank you

Snowflake20
Snowflake20 in reply to CC62

I find it quite interesting to be honest and nothing at all to worry about. I just get told to lie still lol. You will be fine 🙂 😊

I’ve had loads of these in the last few months. Top off, lie back with your arm above your head then a load of freezing jelly. I’ve never been told the results there and then, only “if I saw something serious, I’d have to call a doctor in.”

It’s painless and non-invasive (at least that’s how I felt) and the sonographers have always been super professional.

Hi it’s nothing to worry about, I’ve had 4 now and never been told any findings, always say the results will be sent to your Cardiologist ❤️

Had one two days ago in Gloucester. As all have said no big issues. They won’t tell you much as I was told they aren’t a cardiologist so the report goes off to one. 30 minutes all done.

An echo should be nothing to worry about. If the person doing the job is male I'm sure you can ask for a chaperone. Gel is applied to the ultrasound wand and it's applied to your chest while you are lying on your left side. The wand is connected to a computer which takes photos and measurements. The operator will be making measurements of your heart chambers looking at your heart wall for any issues, at the large blood vessels and looking at your heart valves. They may turn the sound on at some points and you'll hear a whooshing from the machine in time with your blood being pumped from your heart. Afterwards they'll provide tissues to mop up the ultrasound gel. Maybe 10 to 15 minutes in total.

I've had both male and female sonographers, all very professional. Top off, front fastening gown , lie on left side, sonographer on the right with their arm across you while they scan the area, it can be a bit firmly done at times and they sometimes scan the top of your stomach too. Non invasive, not painful although can be a little uncomfortable. My scans have always gone to the cardiologist for his opinion, never had any info from a sonographer.

Morning, I have had many echos I get one every six weeks at the moment, the procedure can be slightly different depending on the sonographer, I am in Scotland but I presume it will be roughly the same everywhere, when you are taken to the room you should get your blood pressure taken and mabe height and weight, then given a paper goonie, tie at the front for modesty, to do the scan the sonographer will have to be able to see all the area, most of them will ask you to lie on your right side, there is a handle at the top of the bed to hold on to, you can get a bit stiff but it's not for long, then they start, it makes the usual beeping noises and swooshing as it scans, the pictures of the heart are on the screen you might be able to see them, I have asked them in the past what it means which they have told me in lay man's terms, they have described what the pictures mean but not if they pick up anything wrong, only twice did they ever say something, one good and one not so, I think the guy got a shock what he seen and blurted it out, they also scan the bottom of the tummy and the bottom of the neck, usually for me it's about 30 mins, the sonographers can be male or female, after they are finished the it's just a case of wiping away the gel and going home,because I am a transplant patient my consultant gets the results straight away and I just wait till she has looked at them, tense moments till I speak to her, good luck and I hope you don't have to wait to long for the results, it's amazing the amount of information they can get from the scan, take care char

Thank you all for your very helpful comments, I now feel more prepared! It sounds like although there are slight differences it's basically the same procedure wherever you go. I haven't spoken to a cardiologist yet so don't know when I'll hear about the results but hopefully it won't be too long, it's the not knowing what's going on that is the slightly worrying bit so the sooner I have some idea the better.

Same as all others except I had to fast for 4 hours prior to the scan

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