Islanders to benefit from improved cardiac services at QEH

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Vivid E9 cardiovascular ultrasound system from GE Healthcare, an example of modern echocardiogram equipment.

Foundation helps buy three echocardiogram devices for new cardiologist

A new cardiologist to the province is allowing for the addition of more heart tests that Islanders can now get closer to home, says the P.E.I. government. 

Cardiologist Dr. Alex MacLean began working as a member of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s internal medicine department last fall, allowing the hospital to offer a number of new heart-specific diagnostic tests not previously available here.

These include transesophageal echocardiogram, stress echocardiogram and dobutamine stress echocardiograms.

Approximately 300 Islanders once travelled to hospitals in Moncton, Saint John or Halifax every year for these kinds of tests. 

Debbie Downe, manger of the Ambulatory Care Centre where the equipment is located, said having the equipment here leads to "more timely diagnoses and treatment interventions to improve the quality of life for Islanders with heart conditions or risk factors for heart conditions.”

"I am happy to be able to provide these tests to my fellow Islanders, on the Island,” said MacLean. “I am also grateful of the support provided by the QEH Foundation that enabled the equipment for these tests to be purchased.'”

A transesophageal echocardiogram uses high-frequency sound waves to obtain detailed images of the heart and arteries that lead to and from it. That allows a cardiologist to determine if there are problems with the heart’s structure and function.

A stress echocardiogram and dobutamine stress echocardiogram are tests that use ultrasound imaging to show how well the heart muscle is working before and after physical activity.

Organizations: Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Ambulatory Care Centre, QEH Foundation

Geographic location: P.E.I., Moncton, Saint John Halifax

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