“How Often Should I Get An Echocardiogram After Heart Surgery?” Asks Jim
Jim just sent me this question about an echocardiogram after heart surgery. He writes, “Adam – How often should an echocardiogram be performed after surgery. I had my aortic valve replaced. Thanks, Jim”
As I’ve shared before, each patient situation is unique. However, unless there are post-operative complications, many of the patients I speak with have an echocardiogram after heart surgery is typically performed once a year. FYI, I’m one of those patients. Each December, I spend 30 minutes with Loretta, the technician at Torrance Memorial Hospital, for the echocardiogram. After that, Dr. Rosin, my cardiologist, reviews the film with me. So far, so good.
If you would like to learn more about echocardiograms, I just found this educational video that is pretty helpful. I also found the video below which addresses mitral regurgitation. This video is a bit technical but you can clearly see the “blood back-flow” of the leaky mitral valve in the echocardiogram.
One final note, I’ve also learned that some patients have echocardiograms performed less frequently as their post-operative time extends beyond three years. Still, most patients I chat with visit their cardiologist at least once a year for a check-up even if an echocardiogram is not performed.
I hope that helps you learn more about echocardiograms after heart surgery!
Keep on tickin!
Adam Pick is a patient, author of The Patient's Guide To Heart Valve Surgery and the founder of HeartValveSurgery.com.