It really is no big deal. I have had 3 or 4 echos. Doesn't take long, doesn't hurt, no radiation exposure to worry about. Only quirk I have is the sound. I can't stand to hear the heartbeat, swishing sound. I ask them to turn it off so I can't hear it.
Its a 45 min long that feels like foreva to be exposed.
I am not a female though but i had my echo last october where everything came back normal,the test were pretty good for me,the only thing i felt a bit uncomfortable is that cold jelly gel that they put on ur chest and rub it before they use the thing,like a microphone to move around your heart,i actually can see my heart pumping and the blood in and out of the heart in the monitor screen.Mine last for less than 20 mins i guess because they saw nothing wrong with the echo i guess :)
Its not the Echo I'm really scared of. Its being exposed while they do it.
The letter that tell what will happen say's 45 min's exposed and that really hits my anxiety big time.
I'm not small in the chest area and finding my heart threw all that tissue is going to proberly make me feel compleatly not good while they do it. takeing my sedative would not be a good idea since sedative can relax the heart mussel.
I'm petrified of pap smear's and this is not much different this and OCD dont agree with each other lol. You might not understand OCD but it makes me feel like I'm going to cheating, or that some thing bad might happen. It's not logical but it is what is.
It's correct, don't use sedatives before your echocardiography. Careful on coffee and other stimulants.
Is it possible to ask for a female cardiologist to do the test? I know they are rare, but it should be possible to find one? :)
What they do at echo (I know you're not afraid of the test itself, but nice to know):
- Initial 12 channel EKG at rest.
- Placing new EKG electrodes (a 2 channel strange EKG they use during echo) and gel.
- Measure heart walls (thickness)
- Measure chamber sizes
- Measure blood pumped out with each beat, and estimate EF
- Checking for muscle damage (MI, myocarditis, etc)
- Checking for holes between left and right chambers (shunts)
- The "scary" part, checking valves for murmurs (this makes a scary noise, different for each valve, and I can guarantee that you will believe you have murmurs. It really doesn't sound good, like someone flushes a toilet or similar. Ask the cardiologist to use a headset!!
- (possibly) checking aorta dimensions.
My echo was done in 15-20 minutes and everything was fine. I thought it was a bit cool (except for the valve things), the cardiologist kept yelling at me "look, you chicken!! Didn't you wanna be a doctor?! come on now!"
I think the 45 minutes include EKG and blood pressure monitoring and the usual chat with your doctor. I understand that you don't like exposing yourself to strangers, absolutely, my only advice is to (at least try) think of this professionally, you're doing this to rule out heart disease and to live a better life, not to cheat on your husband. You should discuss this with your husband AND the cardiologist. I'm sure they both will understand, and you can be pretty sure the cardiologist have experienced this several times before.
thank you for your message.
Surprisingly I'm more scared of females Dr's lol. partly because I have trust issues with women due not having a positive female in my day to day life. Also because they are not reqired by law to have a nurse with them.
I faced my fear I female Dr's when I had to change Dr's after my dr of 10y changed clinic to far away.
My faith in the female cardiologist at my local hospital is good as she diagnoised my IST and her husband is another cardiologist at the hospital who I'm seeing again in july after the echo. I dont know if its him that will doing the echo or what but I sure hope its not the MEAN cardiologist that told me that I a fat and lazy anxious person that lie's basicly.(but longer sentance's)
Thankyyou you discription was great as well