Cardiology

Our caring team of heart specialists will provide you with the best care if you have a heart problem.

We have the latest technology and a team of experts to help you, including the world’s most advanced cardiac CT scanner  which gives a three dimensional picture of the heart to help us to identify heart disease in patients at an early stage.

We will help you feel at ease as soon as you arrive in hospital.

Rapid access chest pain clinic

These clinics ensure that people with new chest pain, thought to be angina, receive quick treatment and investigations. Your GP will start initial investigations of ECG and blood tests before your referral.

If you have been referred to the clinic you will be seen within 14 days of your assessment with your GP, so that your problem doesn’t become worse and to find out if we need to do further tests or provide you with treatment.

All the staff were brilliant, right through from the reception, the nurses who looked after me and the doctor.

Cardiac rehabilitation

There are four phases of cardiac rehabilitation, it should begin as soon as possible after someone is admitted to hospital with coronary heart disease (phase 1), and continue through the early discharge period (phase 2), the formal exercise programme (phase 3) and extend into the long term maintenance of best possible health (phase 4).

If you have been admitted to our hospital with coronary heart disease you should initially be seen by one of our specialist nurses (phase 1) and referred to the community specialist nurses to continue your cardiac rehabilitation programme.

Cardiac investigations unit (heart diagnostics)

Our cardiac investigation units at the University Hospital of North Tees and the University Hospital of Hartlepool have the latest technology to carry out heart tests including:

  • electrocardiogram (ECG) – records the electrical activity of your heart by putting sticky electrodes on the surface of your skin. We use this to measure the rate and rhythm of your heart
  • 24 /48 hour monitoring – we use this to monitor your ECG or blood pressure over a number of hours. We would ask you to wear this monitor and return it to us so we can analyse the results
  • echocardiogram – uses ultrasound to take images of your heart to look at its structure and how it is working
  • stress echocardiography – an echocardiogram while the heart is put under stress by increasing the heart rate using a certain type of medicine
  • pacemaker and loop recorder follow ups – after you have had a pacemaker or loop recorder fitted we will need to check this regularly. We’ll carry out these tests in our clinic every six months to a year

Cardiology day unit

Certain tests are carried out in our cardiology day unit in Hartlepool, if you need one of these tests our team of specialists will carry out these procedures.

  • coronary angiogram – sometimes called cardiac catheterisation is carried out to look at the blood vessels in the heart to show any narrowings and also the circulation of the blood filled chambers of your heart
  • transoesophageal echocardiogram (TOE) – detailed pictures are taken of the heart from the oesophagus (gullet) which lies behind the heart this test is useful to take defined images of the heart valves
  • loop recorder – a device which is implanted under the skin to help find out what is causing symptoms that don’t happen very often such as dizzy spells or blackouts
  • cardioversion – if your heart is in an abnormal rhythm this can be performed to put your heart back into a normal (sinus) rhythm
  • pacemakers – these are carried out at the University Hospital of North Tees

We use the latest type of pacemaker, weighing just a few ounces. If you need a pacemaker, the small electronic device is implanted under your skin. When your heart beats too slowly or pauses, the pacemaker sends an impulse to the heart to remind it to beat.

The service has been great – the team really put me at ease.

Making a referral

GPs should make referral to the rapid access chest pain clinic on Choose and Book.
Other tests carried out in cardiac investigations can be made by making an electronic request or sending a paper request card to the unit.

Contact

We run our clinics  between 8am to 5pm Monday to Friday

Cardiac investigations unit
Ground floor, behind main outpatients
University Hospital of North Tees
01642 624500

Cardiac investigations unit
Ground floor, to the right of the main entrance
University Hospital of Hartlepool
01429 522249

Cardiology day unit
Ground floor, opposite the nursery
University Hospital of Hartlepool
01429 522020

Acute cardiac unit
Ground floor
University Hospital of North Tees
01642 624623

Useful links

British Heart Foundation

Arrhythmia Alliance