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Dear doctor:
I received an echo five years ago.  I kept the report and now five years later I happened to come across it, and I am concerned.  I am over sixty now and want to catch any disease process early so I can enjoy my life and have many good years left.  

I have had heart palpitations on and off over my lifetime.  Over the past two years I have had episodes, especially after drinking some red wines (about two hours later) where my heart pounds at a very fast rate for about a hour or more.  I am not having pain at these times.  I also have times during the day when I've had no wine, lol where I feel a sudden wave of dizziness and experience milder palpitations from time to time.  Now having said that I would like to relate to you what this echo states to see if I need to worry that I might indeed have pulmonary hypertention.  -An added note, my mother had heart failure, as did my grandfather (her father).

Echocardiogram:
M-Mode:  Aortic root is 2.6 cm.  Left atrium is 4.1 cm.  Intraventricular septum is 1.5 cm.  Left ventricular posterior wall is 1.0 cm.  Ejection fraction is 56%.

2-D:  Right ventricular systolic function appears good.  Left ventricular systolic function is well preserved without segmental wall motion abnormalities with a calculated left ventricular ejection fraction of 57%.  The left atrium is minimally dilated in comparison to the aortic root as well as to the right atrium.  The aortic root and right atrium appear to be of normal size.  There is mild ventricular hypertrophy noted.  There is no pericardial effusion seen.  The mitral valve opens well.  It is minimally sclerotic and does not appear to prolapse. The aortic valve appears tricuspid in morphology.  It opens well and closes midline with mild sclerosis without stenosis.  Tricuspid valves are of normal morphology.  Interatrial and interventricular septum appear intact.

Doppler Exam:  Color flow screening Doppler demonstrates trivial aortic, mitral, tricuspid, and pulmonic insufficiency.  Diastolic mitral flows appear relatively normal.

Final Impression:
1.  Preserved right and left ventricular systolic function without wall motion abnormalities.
2.  Trivial to 1+ pan valvular regurgitation.  
3.  PROBABLE MILD PULMONARY HYPERTENTION WITH PA SYSTOLIC PRESSURES IN THE RANGE OF 40 to 45 mmHg.
4.  Mild aortic and mitral sclerosis without stenosis.    

Thank you SO much for reviewing this and giving me your opinion.

Sincerely,
Diane

Answer
Hi Diane,
A 5 year old study is only relevant in comparison with a new one, thus has no meaning any longer otherwise. As far as your palpitations arer concerned, they probably should be evaluated (again?) which usually requires another echocardiogram:
http://www.cardiachealth.org/palpitations
This will also answer your concerns about PH.
Hope this helps,
Dr T
http://www.cardiachealth.org

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