Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What are symptoms of a heart attack?
A: The National Heart Attack Alert Program notes these major symptoms of a heart attack:

  • Tightness and discomfort in the chest area. Most heart attacks cause pain in the center of the chest, lasting for more than a few minutes. Discomfort may subside for a minutes and then return. The sensation is an uncomfortable pressure, a feeling of swelling, fullness, or a painful squeezing.
  • Pain or discomfort in other areas of the body, including one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath. This symptom may occur before any feeling of discomfort arises in the chest, but most often accompanies it.
  • Sweating and nausea. Breaking out in a cold sweat, or experiencing nausea and light-headedness is also common in the advent of a heart attack.

Q: What are the risk factors of heart disease?
A: Some pre-existing personal conditions as well as certain lifestyle choices can contribute to your level of risk for heart disease. High blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, cigarette smoking, diabetes and obesity can all increase a person's risk of heart disease.

Q: I was referred by my primary doctor. What is the process for referrals?
A: Patients are referred to a cardiologist by their doctor. Information is sent to help with the entry process. To streamline the new patient process, please complete the registration forms found on the patient information page. Patient referrals are seen within a 48 hour period whenever necessary and urgent referrals the same day or within 24 hours.

Q: I'm scheduled for diagnostic testing. What should I expect?
A: Heart attack patients may be asked to undergo a number of diagnostic tests and procedures. By learning what these tests are and why they're being done, you'll feel more confident. These tests are important and help the doctor determine if a heart attack occurred, how much your heart was damaged and also what degree of coronary artery disease (CAD) you may have. Your heart attack may have been the first symptom that you have CAD. The tests screen your heart and help the doctor determine what treatment and lifestyle changes will keep your heart healthy and prevent serious future medical events.

Q: I'm scheduled for a procedure. Should I do anything to prepare?
A: Depending on the treatment, your doctor may inform you special instructions to prepare for the procedure. If you are unsure, contact our office for more information regarding your scheduled procedure.

Q: Will someone notify me about my laboratory or test results?
A: For laboratory results, you will only be notified of abnormal findings, once the ordering physician has reviewed the results. For all other testing, you must schedule a follow up appointment with your doctor to receive results.

Q: Can I get my test results over the phone?
A: You must schedule a follow up appointment with your physician to receive test results. No results will be given over the phone.

Q: How long will it take to have my refills called in on my medications?
A: Regular maintenance medications take 24 hours to be called in, controlled substances require physician approval and can take up 3 business days. Prescription refills received after 4:30pm will be called in the next business day.

Q: How much time does a new patient visit take?
A: A new patient visit can take up to 2 hours. It may be longer if the doctor orders any testing to be done on the same day as your visit.

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