I have had 2 echos (one today and one two years ago) trying to explain my tingling and blue fingers/toes, passing out, exhaustion and so forth. Today they did the bubble study. My heart seemed to look fine until the bubble study. When I coughed a mass of bubbles flew to the other side. It was very visable to me. I'm assuming it's still a small ASD because it isn't visible without the bubble test. Is it likely that they will close it? How often do they leave a small hole with symptoms- even though the heart looks okay right now- without closing it?
I am unfamiliar with a "bubble test" so the "..bubbles flew to the other side." conjures up some visions, that may not be right. Are you somehow "looking" at blood flow through the heart and "seeing" (via echo?) bubbles?
Sorry, I know I'm no help with the above.
Have you had your circulation checked.... i.e., how well blood is flowing to your extremities?
My primary care doctor tests blood pressure/flow to my feet as part of a regular annual physical. I ask because of your symptom of tingling and blue fingers/toes.
The bubble test is where they stick an IV in and pump it full of saline that has been shaken as fast as they can. If there is a hole in the heart, the bubbles will be visible going from between the ventricles in an unhealthy fashion. The hole, or ASD, hasn't been evaluated fully yet- and I'm just wondering what happens next.
I too have had this bubble test yesterday and have been told that a procedure may need to be carried out|? I am very nervous as I have been told this may involve putting a mini umbrella type thing up through an artery in my leg and fixing into the hole in my heart? Sounds very risky but I had a mini stroke on 2nd of Jan 2012 so is there risk or not? Im confused?
I also had the bubble study done yesterday. The Tech was going so fast, i could not see. My Cardiologist said that if there was a hole (bubbles on both sides), then we would have to do surgery. I have not received my results yet. They said it could be up to a week before I get them. Best of luck to all of you!!
25% of the population have an unclosed PFO (patent foramen ovale) That is the hole in the atrial septum that allows the blood to pass between the atria when you are a foetus in the womb. It needs to do that as before you are born the blood does not go to the lungs. On being born and taking your first breath the hole closes under pressure in most people. Those 25% in whom it doesn't will possibly never know and in a lot, it closes up by late adolescence. If you remain as I did with a large PFO which on a bubble test isn't distinguished from an ASD, the only possible hints are migraine with aura- which research has shown it is associated with. An unclosed PFO is also associated with early stroke (CVA) as blood can pass 'the wrong way' through and carry bubbles or clots to the brain. So getting it closed is a good idea -esp in someone who has already had minor strokes. Ask about whether you need to take blood thinners/asprin to prevent this in the meantime. One other main issue for anyone with a PFO is scuba diving! That is when you usually discover the PFO - when you have a bend as nitrogen bubbles go through the PFO after a dive. It can be minor like mine - just a bit of nerve damage in my arm, or major -in the spine or brain or fatal. Diving and PFO's do not mix. Having it closed is relatively simple --done regularly on little babies. The devices usually close the hole completely and your own tissue grows around it. You can see the umbrella on scans in your heart and there are some minor risks to any procedure - but better than a debilitating stroke. Good luck to those of you contemplating it.
The procedure is carried out through the femoral vein not artery and these days should be done using ultrasound so they can guide it accurately. I had mine done under general anesthetic as it was part of a study for a new device, but it is often done under local and is not as risky as imagination leads you to think. Stoke can be much worse. Best wishes -you'll be fine!
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