Have you had a stroke or TIA?

(mini-stroke) caused by a clot


A 3D Transoeshageal echocardiogram
A 3D Transoesophageal echocardiogram (TOE) clearly showing a large PFO tunnel after a false negative TOE at another facility. The clue to its presence was a strongly positive contrast Transcranial doppler (TCD) in our office so the TOE was repeated. The PFO was closed that day and the patient discharged that afternoon.

Has the cause been determined to prevent further strokes?

The tests required to determine causality after a stroke vary depending upon age and other medical conditions (co-morbidities).
For example, a young patient is more likely to have a PFO while an older patient with other medical issues is more likely to have undiagnosed intermittent Atrial Fibrillation (A fib, AF) which is when the heart jumps out of rhythm (there may be no symptoms).

Have you been told that there was no heart hole after a Transoesophageal echocardiogram?

Even in experienced hands adhering to specific protocols with targeted imaging 5% of PFO’s can be missed. An inexperienced operator may miss as many as 25%. This is known as a false negative examination which potentially exposes the patient to a further stroke. On average we see a case of non-diagnosed PFO once a month. The Heart Brain Private Clinic (HBPC) can provide a second opinion.

Where you young when you had a stroke?

Times have changed. Medicine has evolved. Diagnostics and treatment recommendations have been revolutionised. HBPC is abreast of the latest national and international consensus statements

Was a thorough examination and testing done to exclude potential underlying heart conditions?

We often see patients who have been told they do not have a PFO after having a transthoracic echocardiogram (Ultrasound of the heart performed through the chest). Unfortunately in the medical community there is a mis held belief amongst some that this is the a test to exclude a PFO. The sensitivity and accuracy is very low.             

HBPC specialises in determining the cause of your stroke using a variety of highly accurate investigations most of which many can be performed in our office.

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