Welcome to the Cardiology Department. The information within these pages is designed to give you a useful summary of the specialty, the services we offer, where they are located and how to contact us.
The Cardiology Department is a regional referral centre for cardiology and cardiothoracic care.
Royal Stoke University Hospital
The department has a Coronary Care Unit and Ward 220, which has facilities for both invasive and non-invasive cardiac investigations, located in Main Building. The department has three cardiac catheter laboratories equipped with dedicated imaging equipment. This is where invasive cardiac procedures are undertaken.
The level of activity within the laboratories continues to expand year upon year. Diagnostic coronary angiography, percutaneous coronary intervention, diagnostic and therapeutic electrophysiology procedures, permanent pacemaker and implantable defibrillator implantation are all performed.
Other procedures conducted include alcoholic septal reduction for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, percutaneous closure of atrial septal defects and patent foramena ovale, as well as balloon mitral valvuloplasty. Patient and visitor access to the catheter lab suite is via the main cardiac reception.
Echocardiograhpy is ultrasound examination of the heart. It is a non-invasive test. The echocardiography department is one of the busiest within cardiology. The majority of the work is carried out by skilled cardiac technicians, all with British Society of Echocardiography accreditation. Additional support from cardiology specialist registrars is also given.
In addition to transthoracic echo we perform transoesophageal studies, dobutamine stress echo and 3D echo reconstruction within the unit. The facilities are predominantly based within the main department, but facilities are also available at the central outpatient department.
Cardiac Maintenance Resonance
This is an active and expanding programme which takes place in partnership with the Trust's Imaging Directorate. The MRI scanner is located in the main radiology department.
The Directorate has successfully introduced exercise testing, and a number of medically supervised tests are being performed. Exercise testing facilities are based both in the cardiology department and the out-patient department.
Ambulatory electrocardiography (out-patient monitoring of heart rhythmn) is run from the main cardiology department. 24 hour and 48 hour continuous holter monitoring as well as Recollect ECG loop recording systems are utilised. Access for patients is via the main reception.
Cardiac rehabilitation service
There is a comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation programme run by a Rehabilitation Co-ordinator. Rehabilitation invovles supervised exercise in a fully equipped gymnasium by an exercise physiologist. There is also a series of counselling and education sessions.
The service provides a comprehensive support and follow up programme for patients recovering from a heart attack, as well as for post-surgical patients.
Tertiary heart failure
We provide a nurse led out-patient based heart failure service, to provide support and close follow up. This service has robust consultant support and works in close collaboration with primary care colleagues. There is a weekly rapid access heart failure clinic for GP referrals and an established multidisciplinary heart failure team.
Rapid Access Chest Pain Clinic (RACPC)
We run seven RACP clinics per week. These are staffed by skilled chest pain nurse specialists, specialist registrars and foundation doctors, as well as being supported by the on-call consultant of the week.
The clinics are open to GP referrals in order to assess stable patients reporting chest pain. Patients are seen within two weeks of the referral. Those who attend undergo both a clinical assessment as well as a treadmill exercise test (where able).
Smart with your heart
Listening to the message from heart failure patients
Smart with your heart is a pilot project which aims to help reduce the number of people with chronic long term heart failure from being readmitted to hospital.
Up to 70 per cent of people leaving hospital with heart failure are admitted to hospital again within 12 months of going home. This can be due to people gradually becoming more unwell at home and then being unsure of what help is available.
The project will see 300 people recruited to use three digital services to help them understand and manage their own condition with confidence. The pilot will run until 1 January 2020.
UHNM is to working in partnership with digital companies, using their new, commercially available technology and the Midland Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, including the community heart failure team.
The first digital service will enable patients to respond to text messages asking how they are feeling compared to their last text message (same, better or worse) and these responses will be recorded by a telehealth co-ordinator.
By doing this, patients will be more closely monitored and will be able to more smoothly access care in the community, should they need it, before they become acutely unwell, reducing the need to return to hospital.
The second digital service will give patients exclusive access to an online health library to help them improve their own self-care behaviours.
The third digital service will refer patients to trusted third sector or voluntary sector organisations, such as bereavement counselling or citizens advice or to offer patients opportunities to engage in community groups and activities such as dance classes, allotment working or walking groups.
The wellbeing of patients and improvements in their quality of life through social prescribing can help reduce GP attendances and improve patients' general physical health.
Information for Patients
Patients taking part will be given access to an online account with Recap Health to enable them to access educational information designed and approved specifically for the individual.
Videos, leaflets and webpages will be available for patients to download with the option to be able to send feedback about the content or request additional information.
Patients will also be set up on 'Florence' which is an interactive text phone service and is checked weekly. One of our team will contact a patient if they respond to the text message that they are not feeling as well as they were.
There are a number of organisations who provide support in the community and can help people with any problems that patients may be experiencing as a result of heart failure. These include anxiety, depression, housing and finances. A referral can be made if necessary, to a digital tool called 'I Navigator' for patients to find additional support in these areas.
In order to take part, patients will need:
A mobile phone that can send and receive text messages.
An e mail address.
To be able to read and text in English (or have a carer who will do this on your behalf).
To live in the North Staffordshire area.
Those wishing to take part will in the pilot will be put in contact with a Telehealth Co-ordinator who will explain in more detail what is involved including how to set up 'Florence' and the Recap Health Digital Library. You will also be given the opportunity to ask questions.
Patients will be required to be part of the project for a maximum of three months, however, you can stop being part of the project at any stage you may wish.
Your care will not be affected in anyway by not taking part in the project.
View our patient information leaflet here
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