Blood Pressure Measurement
How Is Blood Pressure Checked?
Having your blood pressure checked is quick, easy, and painless. Your blood pressure is measured with an instrument called a sphygmomanometer (sfig-mo-ma-nom-e-ter).
It works like this: A blood pressure cuff is wrapped around your upper arm and inflated to stop the blood flow in your artery for a few seconds. A valve is opened and air is then released from the cuff and the sounds of your blood rushing through an artery are heard through a stethoscope. The first sound heard and registered on the gauge or mercury column is called the systolic blood pressure. It represents the maximum pressure in the artery produced as the heart contracts and the blood begins to flow. The last sound heard as more air is released from the cuff is the diastolic blood pressure. It represents the lowest pressure that remains within the artery when the heart is at rest.
Congestive Heart Faliure Clinic
For patients who were recently hospitalized or diagnosed with heart failure, Buffalo Heart Group has a dedicated team of physicians, mid-level providers and registered nurses to monitor and follow your condition. The doctors and staff of the Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) Clinic follow guidelines set by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association to try and improve symptoms and minimize readmission to the hospital for our patients.
Heart Failure Management is a team effort – making you and your physician key players. Our providers and staff are here to provide specialized care and education to help you better understand your condition and manage your health. Our CHF clinic will provide ongoing follow up as long as it is needed – the goal is to help you live well with CHF and continue doing the things you enjoy.
Anticoagulation Clinic (Coumadin®)
For patients who have a condition requiring anticoagulation (for example, some types of artifical heart valves or certain types of heart rhythms), Buffalo Heart Group has a dedicated professional team comprised of physicians, registered nurses, and medical technicians to monitor and adjust your dosage of Coumadin®.
If you are on this medication, periodic blood work (PT/INR tests) will be ordered to monitor your level of anticoagulation. These may be done at any blood-testing laboratory that is convenient to you and approved by your health insurance.
The Coumadin Clinic team will monitor these results and make any adjustments of your dosage necessary to maintain the appropriate level of anticoagulation for your particular needs. We also provide education regarding this medication, both via printed form and also accessible via this Web site.
Pacemaker/Implantable Cardiac Defibrillator (ICD) Clinics
Pacemaker Follow-up Clinic
For patients with pacemakers, Buffalo Heart Group offers comprehensive follow-up performed by Registered Nurses that specialize in pacemaker and ICD technology. The purpose of this follow-up is to check that the pacemaker is functioning properly; to make sure that the device is programmed appropriately for your changing needs; and to monitor the battery status.
In a typical pacemaker evaluation, we will attach ECG electrodes and record and analyze the ECG. We will then use a programming device to evaluate your pacemaker and gather information stored by the pacemaker, which allows us to check its function. We also use a programmer and/or a magnet to evaluate the battery status of your pacemaker. Finally, we check the final settings of your pacemaker and make any changes that would be beneficial to meet your particular lifestyle or medical condition.
A pacemaker office evaluation generally lasts approximately 15-30 minutes. There is no discomfort involved, and you and your family member will be able to learn more about your pacemaker and have an opportunity to ask questions. We will generally see you approximately 2 weeks after your implant surgery and then every 3-4 months thereafter. More Information…
Implantable Cardiac Defibrilator Follow-up Clinic
We offer comprehensive follow-up for patients with IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR'S. This is done at Buffalo Heart Group by registered nurses that specialize in pacemaker and IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR technology. Follow-up visits allow us to check that your IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR is working properly; that it is programmed appropriately; and evaluate the IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR battery.
We will schedule regular IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR checkups: initially approximately 2 weeks after your surgery and periodically thereafter. A typical follow-up visit lasts about 20-30 minutes. A programming device will communicate with the IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR pulse generator in your body. You will not feel these tests while they are occurring. During these sessions, several tests may be done, including:
- Printing out information on how your IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR performed since your last visit.
- Adjusting the programmed settings of your IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR, if necessary. As your heart condition may change over time, the programmed settings in your IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR may need to occasionally be adjusted. This is easily done with the programming device (painlessly).
- Checking the battery to see how much energy remains. If the battery energy is low, plans to replace the pulse generator will be made.
You will also be given the opportunity to learn more about your IMPLANTABLE CARDIAC DEFIBRILATOR and your heart and to ask any questions that you or your family might have regarding the device. More Information…
Your primary doctor may refer you to one of our cardiologists for a consultation. If you are seen by one of our cardiologists in consultation, he/she will ask you many questions in regards to your past medical history and current symptoms. They will also require a complete list of your current medications. Once the doctor has obtained your history, he/she will perform a full physical examination with specific attention to your heart and lungs. He/she will then discuss with you their findings and any recommendations they may have. The doctor’s recommendations may include specific cardiac testing to assist them in their evaluation of your problem. Also, he/she may recommend and prescribe medication if they deem it necessary. Once the doctor’s evaluation is complete, they will forward a letter to your primary MD. If necessary he/she will arrange for you to return for a follow-up appointment.
Managing a patient’s cholesterol is one of the many services provided by our team of cardiologists.
A patient’s cholesterol profile affects his risk for developing coronary artery disease (blockages in the heart arteries). Additionally, if a patient is known to have coronary artery disease,research has shown that significantly improving that patient’s cholesterol profile can sometimes result in a regression of those blockages over time.
Cholesterol levels are monitored with regular laboratory surveillance. Laboratory testing can be performed at a laboratory that is convenient to you, and approved by your health insurance. Once your cardiologist obtains your bloodwork results, he or she will discuss with you dietary measures and/or medications that may benefit you. Also, our office provides educational pamphlets to assist you in choosing heart-healthy dietary, and life-style changes.