A One-Stop Clinic for Heart Failure Patients
The Heart Success Multidisciplinary Clinic is a one-day, one-stop clinic at the Johns Hopkins Outpatient Center in Baltimore, Maryland where patients who have been previously diagnosed with heart failure or patients whose diagnosis is in question, can complete all the normal testing for heart failure over the course of a day.
From EKG to Stress Test: What to Expect During Your Visit
On the day of your visit, you may have the following tests and meetings:
An ultrasound of the heart preformed by a technician to see how well the heart squeezes (ejection fraction) and measure the size of the heart chambers and how thick the walls of the heart are.
Metabolic Exercise Stress Test:
A stress test performed on a stationary bike that helps determine whether your limitations are from your heart, your lungs, or from being out of shape. The results of the test help the team recommend how much and how you should exercise. Throughout the test, you are connected to a EKG/heart monitor and are breathing through a mask.
An EKG shows how electricity is moving through your heart. A technician will place stickers on your chest and connect the stickers with wires to a machine.
A licensed dietician will meet with you to review your current diet and how best to make changes, such as reducing the amount of salt in your diet. If you are a diabetic, the dietician can give you helpful hints about reducing your carbohydrates while maintaining a heart healthy diet.
A pharmacist will review your medication list for possible interactions and also may be able to recommend more efficient, and sometimes lower priced alternatives.
Nurse Practitioner Visit:
A nurse practitioner will review your medical history and current health. The nurse practitioner will focus on your heart failure symptoms, how you manage them day to day, and any warning signs of worsening heart failure.
Additionally, phlebotomists will draw your blood to be sent for lab testing.
At the end of your visit, the entire team meets with Dr. Stuart Russell, Director of Heart Failure and Transplantation, or Dr. Edward Kasper, Chief of Clinical Cardiology, to go over all results. Dr. Russell or Dr. Kasper will then meet with you and go over the team’s report. We will mail you and your primary doctor copies of all our results and suggestions.
Make an Appointment
The first step in planning your visit to the Heart Success Clinic is calling the Johns Hopkins Cardiovascular Access Line (CAL) at 888-502-0550. Members of our CAL staff will help you schedule your appointment, coordinate with your insurance company and ensure that your chart is forwarded to the Heart Success Clinic staff. The clinic will be open beginning October 16, 2009.
Prepare for Your Appointment
On the day of your appointment, arrive at the Johns Hopkins Outpatient Center.
- Your entire appointment, including all tests, takes place in the same area.
- You should wear clothing you feel comfortable being active in and comfortable shoes (you will be on a stationary bike for part of your visit with the exercise physiologist).
- You should also bring all your medications with you as well as any logs of your weight or vital signs you may have been keeping at your primary doctor’s request.
- You may be scheduled for tests that require you to avoid caffeine and nicotine, or delay eating lunch. If this is the case, we will let you know ahead of time.
- Most important, bring questions—we are here to help you and your primary doctor focus your care!