Committed to Excellence in Heart Care
Our commitment to excellence in heart care begins with you, the patient. Our cardiology team understands that giving you the best possible care means getting to know you and everything about your heart. Cardiology - Lexington is a hospital-based clinic and is under the direction of cardiologist, Katie Twomley, MD, specializing in diagnosis, treatment, education and rehabilitation. We use cutting-edge technology to treat heart disease and conditions linked to heart disease, such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. We offer a complete list of services including:
- Physician offices and diagnostic services in one location
- Advanced cardiovascular technology and research
- Non-invasive procedures
- Cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation
Congestive Heart Failure Clinic
Congestive heart failure (CHF) is generally defined as the inability of the heart to supply sufficient blood flow to meet the needs of the body. CHF is a long-term condition that, if left untreated, can affect many organs of the body and eventually lead to their shutdown and death. However, CHF can be managed through careful monitoring by health professionals, lifestyle changes and medications.
Helping CHF sufferers understand their condition and how to manage it is the goal of the Congestive Heart Failure Clinic. At least 25 percent of the patients who come to the Emergency Department with heart-related issues have CHF.
At the Congestive Heart Failure Clinic, a cardiac nurse educator works with CHF patients and their primary care physician and/or cardiologist to help them manage their disease at home. Patients admitted with a CHF diagnosis receive comprehensive instructions prior to discharge and can enroll in a special class for CHF patients. Patients learn how to monitor their symptoms to know when to seek medical intervention.
In addition, patients receive a set of scales, a blood pressure monitor and a pill box to help in daily monitoring of symptoms and medications. Rapid weight gain is a significant indicator that fluid is building up in the body. Patients are supplied with the scales so that their weight can be monitored daily. Gaining two or more pounds in a day or five pounds in a week are signs of worsening heart failure and that medical intervention is needed.When worsening symptoms are found at the onset, patients can avoid hospitalization.
A cardiac nurse educator follows up with each patient at home to monitor their condition and make sure they are following up with doctor appointments. Cardiologist Katie Twomley, MD, medically supervises patients already under her care and is available to clinic patients who do not have a heart specialist.
The Congestive Heart Failure Clinic team works in collaboration with the patient's physician. The intent of the program is not to replace care provided by the patient's physician or cardiologist, but rather to complement as an added resource helping manage a serious, chronic condition.
Heart Disease Detection
Lexington Medical Center is accredited in the area of adult stress and adult transthoracicechocardiography by the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Echocardiography Laboratories (ICAEL). Lexington Medical Center's echocardiography lab was one of the first in the state to earn accreditation and has maintained its status for 3 consecutive terms.
The ICAEL accreditation means that Lexington Medical Center has undergone a thorough review of its operational and technical components by a panel of experts. The ICAEL grants accreditation only to those facilities that are found to be providing quality patient care in compliance with national standards through a comprehensive application process including detailed case study review.
Accreditation is a seal of approval from the ICAEL that patients can rely on as an indication that our facility has been carefully critiqued on all aspects of its operations considered relevant by medical experts in echocardiography. Patients undergoing echocardiography exams here can be assured that they are receiving exceptional care provided by a highly skilled staff.
Echocardiography is used in the early detection of life-threatening heart disorders and other diseases. It enables physicians to view the heart valve structure, heart wall function and measures blood flow through the heart. Cardiovascular diseases are the number one cause of death in the United States. On average, 1 American dies every 38 seconds of cardiovascular disease-disorders of the heart and blood vessels.
Early detection is the key, and echocardiography is crucial to finding heart disorders early. There are many facets that contribute to an accurate diagnosis based on the echocardiography testing. The skill of the echocardiography sonographer performing the examination, the type of equipment used, the background and knowledge of the interpreting physician and quality assurance measures are each critical to quality testing.
The ICAEL closely monitors these factors, and Lexington Medical Center's accreditation validates that we meet or exceed standards in all of categories.
A Transesophageal Echocardiogram or TEE is a diagnostic test that allows your doctor to record images of your heart from inside your esophagus. Since the esophagus lies just behind the heart, TEE may produce clearer pictures of the heart than would standard echocardiography taken from outside the chest.
During TEE, harmless sound waves bounce (echo) off your heart. These sound waves create images of your heart as it pumps blood through the valves and chambers. A computerized ultrasound machine changes the sound waves into pictures on a video screen. You cannot hear or feel the sound waves. The recording shows the inside of your heart movement.
These images help your doctor identify and treat problems such as infection, disease, or defects in your heart's wall or valves. TEE is also very useful in evaluating patients who have had strokes.