Beacon Hospital’s new Non-Invasive Cardiology Unit is based in the Rapid Access Cardiology Unit (RACC) in Suite 35 of the Mall.
Our Non-Invasive Cardiology Unit allows patients direct access to non-invasive cardiac testing as requested by their GP. The unit is open from 8am until 8pm Monday to Friday. Last appointments will be taken for 7pm to allow sufficient time for testing.
This unit, run by our team of Cardiology Specialist Nurses and Cardiac Physiologists offers the following tests in modern and technologically advanced surroundings: Stress Test, Electrocardiogram, Echocardiogram, Holter Monitoring and Blood Pressure Monitoring.
The unit has full access to our Radiology Department which is the most technologically advanced in Ireland. Should further testing such as Cardiac CT be required, this can be arranged for you from the Non-Invasive Cardiology Unit.
Blood Pressure Monitoring
Blood pressure is the term used to describe the strength with which your blood pushes the sides of your arteries as it is pumped throughout your body. Your Consultant may recommend 24-hour or ambulatory blood pressure monitoring. This is where you will wear a blood pressure monitor for 24 hours and your blood pressure will be check every 30 minutes or so. This gives your Consultant a clear picture of how your blood pressure changes over the course of a day.
An echocardiogram is an ultrasound of the heart that provides moving pictures and provides information on the structure and function of the heart. An echocardiogram can help diagnose and monitor certain heart conditions by checking the structure of the heart and surrounding blood vessels, analysing how blood flows through them and assessing the pumping chambers of the heart.
An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a test used to check your heart’s rhythm, and electrical activity. Sensors attached to the skin detect electrical signals each time your heart beats. These are recorded and your Cardiologist will examine these to see if there are any unusual patterns.
ECGs are often used alongside other tests to help diagnose and monitor a range of heart conditions.
A Holter monitor is a small device which is used to track your heart rhythm. Your Consultant may ask you to wear this for one to two days. During this time, the monitor will record each of your heartbeats.
A Holter monitor is often used when your Consultant feels that more information than that from other tests such as and ECG is needed. The information collected by the Holter monitor can help your Consultant determine if you have an irregular heartbeat.
A stress test, sometimes called an exercise stress test, allows your Cardiologist to monitor your heart’s activity during a period of physical activity. Exercise increases your heart rate meaning that an exercise stress test can reveal problems with blood flow within your heart that might otherwise be difficult to detect.
Your stress test at Beacon Hospital will involve you walking on a treadmill while your blood pressure, heart rhythm and breathing are monitored.
Your Cardiologist may recommend a stress test if you have signs or symptoms of coronary artery disease or an irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia). The test may also guide treatment decisions, measure the effectiveness of treatment, or determine the severity if you have previously been diagnosed with a heart condition.
Results and Next Steps
Following completion of your requested tests, a detailed report will be prepared and sent to your referring GP. Your GP will inform you of any findings and will refer you to a specialist if any further investigation or treatment is required.