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Vascular testing: an overview

Vascular testing refers to a range of diagnostic procedures aimed at evaluating the health and functionality of the circulatory system. Utilizing advanced technologies such as ultrasound imaging, Doppler ultrasound, and ankle-brachial index measurements, vascular testing provides detailed insights into blood flow dynamics, vessel integrity, and potential obstructions. These tests are vital for identifying conditions like atherosclerosis, peripheral artery disease (PAD), and venous insufficiency, enabling early intervention and preventing complications.

Dr. Robert Hacker, our double board-certified general and vascular surgeon, relies on vascular testing to guide clinical decision-making and treatment planning. By interpreting the results of these tests, Dr. Hacker can accurately diagnose vascular conditions, assess disease severity, and determine the most appropriate course of action for his patients.

Doctor looking at results from vascular testing in St. Louis

Vascular testing can help with:

  • Diagnosing peripheral artery disease (PAD) and assessing its severity
  • Detecting deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE)
  • Evaluating the risk of stroke by assessing carotid artery health
  • Identifying aneurysms in the aorta or other major blood vessels
  • Monitoring the effectiveness of treatment for vascular conditions
  • Assessing blood flow to extremities before surgery or vascular procedures
  • Guiding decisions on medication management for hypertension and hyperlipidemia
  • Screening for risk factors associated with cardiovascular diseases
  • Identifying arterial blockages or narrowing that may require intervention
  • Monitoring the progression of vascular diseases over time

Advanced vascular imaging tests offered at SVSS

Carotid Duplex

Carotid Duplex is a non-invasive imaging test that combines ultrasound imaging with Doppler ultrasound to assess the carotid arteries in the neck. High-frequency sound waves are transmitted through the tissues, and the echoes are recorded to create detailed images of the blood vessels. Doppler ultrasound measures the speed and direction of blood flow within the carotid arteries. This vascular testing in St. Louis is crucial for evaluating the presence of plaque buildup (atherosclerosis), which can narrow or block the arteries, increasing the risk of stroke.

Arterial Doppler

Arterial Doppler is a diagnostic test used to assess blood flow in the arteries of the lower and upper extremities. It uses Doppler ultrasound technology to evaluate the speed and direction of blood flow within these arteries. By measuring blood pressure at various points along the extremities, Arterial Doppler helps identify arterial blockages, narrowing, or abnormalities. This is crucial for diagnosing peripheral artery disease (PAD), characterized by reduced blood flow to the limbs due to arterial narrowing.

Abdominal Vascular Duplex

Abdominal Vascular Duplex is a comprehensive imaging test used to evaluate the blood vessels in the abdomen, including the aorta and its major branches, such as the renal and mesenteric arteries. This non-invasive test combines B-mode ultrasound imaging with Doppler ultrasound to visualize the anatomy of the abdominal blood vessels and assess blood flow characteristics. Abdominal Vascular Duplex is essential for detecting abdominal aortic aneurysms, renal artery stenosis, mesenteric ischemia, and other vascular conditions that can lead to complications.

Venous Duplex

Venous Duplex is a diagnostic imaging test used to evaluate the veins in the legs, arms, and other parts of the body. This test combines B-mode ultrasound imaging with Doppler ultrasound to visualize the veins’ anatomy and assess blood flow patterns. Venous Duplex is useful for diagnosing deep vein thrombosis (DVT), a condition characterized by blood clot formation in the deep veins of the body, and preventing complications like pulmonary embolism.

Hemodialysis Access and Maintenance

Hemodialysis access and maintenance involve specialized vascular imaging tests to assess the patency and function of vascular access sites used for hemodialysis treatment in patients with end-stage renal disease. This vascular testing in St. Louis includes Doppler ultrasound evaluation of arteriovenous fistulas (AVF) and grafts, as well as central venous catheters. By assessing blood flow within these access sites, clinicians can detect stenosis, thrombosis, or other complications that may affect dialysis efficiency. Early identification of vascular access dysfunction allows for timely intervention to restore adequate blood flow.

Vascular Screenings

Vascular screenings encompass a range of non-invasive tests to identify individuals at risk of developing vascular diseases or complications. These may include assessments such as ankle-brachial index (ABI) measurements, which evaluate blood pressure in the arms and ankles to detect peripheral artery disease (PAD). Other screening modalities may involve ultrasound imaging of the carotid arteries to assess stroke risk or evaluation of abdominal aortic diameter to detect abdominal aortic aneurysms.

Personalized vascular treatment options at SVSS

At St. Louis Vascular Surgical Specialists, we prioritize personalized care tailored to your unique needs. Led by Dr. Robert Hacker, a double-board-certified vascular surgeon with extensive experience, we offer comprehensive treatment options to address your specific condition effectively. Dr. Hacker will meet with you, conduct the necessary vascular testing in St. Louis, and plan a custom treatment plan tailored to your individual circumstances and preferences.

Whether you require minimally invasive procedures such as angioplasty and stenting or complex vascular surgeries such as bypass grafting or endarterectomy, our team at SVSS is committed to delivering the highest standard of care. We understand that every patient is different, and we provide compassionate and individualized treatment that meets your expectations and helps you achieve optimal vascular health.

Doctor looking at vascular testing in St. Louis

Schedule your consultation with Dr. Hacker

St. Louis Vascular Surgical Specialists is your gateway to expert vascular care. Led by the esteemed Dr. Robert Hacker, a double board-certified general and vascular surgeon and a registered physician for vascular interpretation (RPVI), we are committed to helping you achieve and maintain optimal vascular health. We don’t just treat you as a patient; we welcome you as a member of our extended family and offer treatments that ensure optimal outcomes. Schedule your consultation with Dr. Hacker to address your unique vascular needs and get your vascular testing in St. Louis.

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