My EP requested I get an echocardiogram (no rush) after my recent in person checkup. Said all was fine. Have had dual pm for little over 3 years. What would be the purpose of having this echo test? Thanks!




by new to pace.... - 2021-07-14 07:16:01

Another way to check your how your heart is doing.  A inside look with measurements.  No to worry.

new to pace

Reason for Echocardiogram

by Selwyn - 2021-07-14 07:16:17

Best to ask the EP than guess from someone here and still not get the correct answer for your particular health needs.




by Tracey_E - 2021-07-14 10:11:29

My doctor does an echo every year. It gives them a picture of the structure of the heart as well as ejection fraction, which is how hard the heart is pumping (ejection fraction). The pacer makes it beat faster, EF is how strong and efficient those beats are. 

Routine echocardiogram

by AgentX86 - 2021-07-14 13:55:01

If you read through these threads, there is a condition called "pacemaker induced cardiomyopathy", essentially the enlargment of the heart caused by the asymetrical pacing of the right ventricle.  It's not a common condition but it's worth checking.  An echo is a very good and inexpensive way to make sure that all is well.  It's a simple procedure and takes, maybe, 30 minutes (including all the delays normal to visiting a clinic).  Don't sweat it. It's just a routine check.  I get one every year on both my heart and carotids (different times).  They said they were going to do my neck every six months but then scheduled me for a year.  Go figure.


by Julros - 2021-07-14 20:43:50

It's not always inexpensive. Within the USA health care system, cost varies by location and type of insurance coverage. Mine is going to cost around $600. I already have a BiV pacer, and my EF was 50%, so I'm not sure I understand why it has been ordered. All doc will say is "it's standard of care".


by AgentX86 - 2021-07-14 23:03:25

Cheap is a relative term.  Compared to even an MRI it's cheap and a whole lot cheaper than a cath.  I can't think of many procedures that cost less.  Even a crown on a tooth is a couple thousand of dollars. 

I don't know if there are imaging centers, like there are for MRIs but it's a possibility.

Cost varies a lot!

by Elisabet - 2021-07-16 23:53:36

In the article below, someone was charged ten times more for the same procedure at the same location from one year to the next. It might be worth a shot to talk to your insurance provider to see what your options might be, maybe a different location or provider. Also, talk to your doctor! He likely wants an echo for baseline, and if it looks good to him, you might be able to stretch out the time before the next one instead of routinely having one every year. I've certainly had that conversation myself about other procedures, expecially ones that required travelling overnight. 

For myself, I consider it a victory to get a regular echocardiogram. I've got less than ideal anatomy for it - my ribs cast shadows in the wrong places - and too many things going on, so several times I've had to get a transesophogeal echo and those are not fun and much more expensive.

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I wouldn't be alive if it wasn't for pacemakers. I've had mine for 35+ years. I was fainting all of the time and had flat-lined also. I feel very blessed to live in this time of technology.