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Cardiac Sciences

Chest Pain Unit (CPU)

Located in the Accident & Emergency Department on the ground floor, the CPU functions 24 hours a day and is dedicated to patients with chest pain. This includes patients who develop any type of back, chest, shoulder, arm, or jaw discomfort; uneasiness or restlessness, undue sweating, difficulty in breathing or suffocating; and discomfort in the upper abdomen that may be mistaken as gas or flatulence.

Patient Care

  • Thorough examination of the patient by a doctor trained in emergency management, followed by an ECG.
  • A blood sample for cardiac enzymes is taken.
  • If the physical examination, ECG and blood report are normal, the patient is asked to wait at the unit for four hours. After four hours another ECG and blood sample are taken. If both are normal again, then the patient is discharged. However, in case of an abnormality, the patient is immediately admitted.
  • In some cases, an X-ray, 2D Echo, ultrasound or other tests may be performed before making a final decision.


Aortic Stenosis

Aortic stenosis is a build-up of calcium deposits on the valve that causes it to narrow and reduce blood flow to the rest of your body.

Diagnosis includes:

  • Clinical examination
  • Electrocardiogram
  • Chest X-ray
  • Echocardiogram
  • Cardiac catheterisation


Treatment depends on the seriousness of the disease. If it is mild, medication may be prescribed to help regulate your heartbeat and prevent blood clots. However, in severe cases replacing the diseased aortic valve, transcatheter or surgical valve may be recommended. Methods and devices used to ascertain the level of severity include:

Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG): This is a test that documents the electrical activity of your heart via 10 small electrode patches affixed to the skin on your legs, arms and chest.

Holter Monitor: This is a moveable ECG that can monitor the electrical activity of your heart 24 hours a day for one to five days.

Stress Test: This finds the quantity of stress your heart can handle before getting an abnormal rhythm or proof of diminished blood flow to your heart muscle.

Echocardiogram or Echo: This graphically shows your heart’s chambers and valves using high-frequency sound waves and records their movement.

Computed Tomography (CT): Electron beam computed tomography scanning is a test that finds calcium accumulation in the lining of your arteries while your heart is beating.

Coronary Angiography: This is a procedure done in the cath lab. A special dye and X-rays are used to see how blood flows through the arteries in your heart.

Coronary Angioplasty: This is a minimally invasive procedure that opens up blocked or narrowed coronary arteries. A balloon opens up choked arteries that supply blood to your heart. A small device called a ‘stent’ is also permanently put in your arteries to allow undisturbed blood flow. The procedure is carried out after giving you local anaesthesia and lasts for one to two hours.


  • As a patient, you will be advised to not eat or drink anything for four hours before the procedure.
  • You will be asked to check into the hospital in the morning when the procedure is scheduled or asked to stay in the hospital the night before, depending on your situation.
  • You will be given a hospital gown to wear during the procedure.
  • The healthcare provider will explain the procedure and its risks.
  • You are expected to sign a consent form before the procedure.
  • Inform your cardiologist if you have allergies, had a bad reaction to contrast material in the past or if you might be pregnant.