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Naples Heart Rhythm Specialists, P. A.
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Naples Heart Rhythm Specialists, P. A.

Phone Icon (239) 263-0849


Cardiac Imaging

Cardiac PET (Positron Emission Tomography)

A cardiac PET scan is the most accurate, non-invasive nuclear imaging test of the heart. A normal cardiac PET scan has a high predictive value that a person will be free of a life threatening heart attack within one year of taking the test (99.6%). It correctly identifies approximately 95% of patients with significant coronary artery blockages and patients with non-hemodynamically significant coronary artery blockages (current nuclear stress tests boast approximately 76% correct identification).

It uses radioactive tracers, called radionuclides, to produce pictures of your heart. It can diagnose coronary artery disease or heart damage from a heart attack and can accurately predict which patient will benefit from coronary stenting or coronary artery bypass grafting before undergoing the procedure.

There are approximately 160 cardiac PET centers worldwide and only 30 centers using advanced software measuring myocardial blood flow reserve. This allows us to determine if someone has a disease involving the small vessels and micro vessels in the heart.

A huge benefit is reduced radiation exposure from the test with a half-life of the radioactive tracer, called rubidium, of only 76 seconds. It is reimbursed by Medicare and private insurances based on appropriate diagnosis. The study lasts approximately 30 minutes from start to finish and does not use treadmill exercise.

The stress phase of the exam is usually performed with a pharmaceutical that makes your heart respond as if you are exercising. This pharmaceutical is given in your vein through an IV line while an electrocardiogram (ECG) is performed to monitor your heart. The results of your test will be sent to the doctor who asked you to have the exam.

Cardiac SPECT (Myoview/Cardiolite)

A cardiac SPECT scan is a nuclear stress that uses radioactive tracers to produce pictures of your heart. These tracers are different than those used in cardiac PET. The test is used either with a stress chemical or used with a patient walking on a treadmill. It is the most commonly performed nuclear stress test and provides images that can show areas of low blood flow and areas of damaged heart muscle.

It is used to diagnose coronary artery disease, look at the size and function of the heart, and guide treatment. The test takes approximately 3 to 3 1/2 hours to complete. The results of your test will be sent to the doctor who asked you to have the exam.

Regular Exercise Stress Test

A regular exercise stress test is painless, non-invasive, and requires no needles. This test measures electrical changes to your heart during stress-like exercise. It helps diagnose coronary artery disease and possible exercise-induced arrhythmias.

FDG Viability Study

An FDG (f-18 labeled fluorodeoxyglucose) study is a viability study. This helps determine if someone with a weakened heart or scar tissue has heart muscle that may be alive. This is important for doctors to know when treating patients. It can help an interventional cardiologist decide if a stent will benefit a patient.

It can also help an electrophysiologist determine if additional testing is necessary before implanting a defibrillator. It can also help a cardiac surgeon determine if restoring blood flow to heart muscle will actually benefit a patient. The test may take up to 3 hours and will require giving a patient a glucose (sugar) bolus and may require giving a patient insulin. A patient must be fasting prior to the procedure for at least 6 hours.


An MUGA scan (multi-gated acquisition scan) is a nuclear medicine test used to evaluate the function of the right and left ventricles. It uses radioactive materials called tracers to show the heart chambers. Determining one's heart function is an important way to guide medical therapy, as well as evaluating the need for an implantable cardioverter defibrillator.


An echocardiogram (also called Echo) is a type of ultrasound test that uses sound waves that are sent through a device called a transducer. The device picks up echoes of sound as they bounce off different parts of the heart. The echoes are turned into moving pictures. It is used to look for the cause of murmurs (abnormal heart sounds) by visualizing heart valves. It can also evaluate the thickness of your heart, the size and shape of the chambers of the heart, and the ability of your heart chambers to pump blood. It also looks for blood clots and tumors inside the heart.

Carotid Doppler

A carotid Doppler test is used to detect narrowing of the arteries in the neck (the carotid arteries) that supply blood to the brain. The arteries are visualized using sound waves (ultrasound) for evidence of plaque (blockages).

Cardiac Monitoring

Holter Monitoring

This takes a continuous recording of your heart rhythm, usually for 24 hours, while you go about your usual daily activities. It is especially useful in diagnosing abnormal heart rhythms.

Event Monitoring

A cardiac event recorder is a battery-powered, portable device that you control to tape-record your heart's electrical activity (ECG-Electrocardiogram) when you have symptoms. There are two types of event recorders: a loop memory monitor and a symptom event monitor.

Tilt Table Test

A tilt table test is used to evaluate the cause of unexplained fainting (syncope).


Transesophageal Echocardiography (TEE)

This is a test that produces pictures of your heart. Unlike a standard echocardiogram, the echo transducer that produces the sound waves for TEE is attached to a thin tube that passes through your mouth, down your throat and into your esophagus.

Implantable Loop Recorder (ILR)

Also known as an insertable cardiac monitor. This is a small device about the size of a pack of chewing gum or USB memory stick that is implanted just under the skin of the chest to record the heart's electrical activity.

Electrophysiology Study (EPS or EP Study)

An EP study is an accurate method for studying the heart's electrical system. It allows doctors to find abnormal sites inside the heart that may be causing serious arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms). During an EP study, doctors insert special electrode catheters (long, flexible wires) into the heart. These catheters can sense electrical activity in different parts of the heart. They can also be used to deliver tiny electrical impulses to pace the heart (cause it to beat).


Electrical cardioversion is a procedure during which the heart is given a brief electric shock to reset an abnormally rapid and/or irregular heart rhythm back to a normal rhythm.


A catheter ablation is a procedure used to selectively destroy, or ablate, areas of the heart that are causing a heart rhythm problem. During catheter ablation, doctors insert an electrode catheter (a long, flexible wire) into your heart. They place the catheter so that it lies near the abnormal area(s). The catheter sends energy, in the form of heat or freezing cold, to those areas. The heat or cold destroys a small area of heart tissue, which can cure your heart rhythm problem. There are many different types of ablation, depending on the problem area.


A pacemaker is a small, lightweight, electronic device prescribed for people who have a slow heartbeat, or bradycardia. It is implanted under the skin, usually in the upper chest, near the left or right shoulder. The pacemaker keeps track of the heart's electrical activity. If it senses that the heart is beating too slowly or is pausing too long between beats, the pacemaker delivers electrical impulses (signals) that stimulate the heart and keep it beating at the proper pace.

Click Here for an article from the American Heart Association "Cardiac Pacemakers from the Patient's Perspective."

Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD)

A small electronic device that is implanted (inserted) into your body. It is designed to treat life-threatening rapid heart rhythms. The ICD monitors your heart rhythm (the speed and pattern of your heartbeat) at all times. If it senses a dangerously fast heart rhythm, the ICD delivers electrical impulses and/or shocks to restore a normal heart rhythm.

Click Here for an article from the American Heart Association "How to Respond to an ICD Shock."

Click Here for an article from the American Heart Association "Coping with my Partner's ICD."