Early Detection

At Portsmouth Regional Hospital's Heart & Vascular Institute, we emphasize the importance of early detection and use the most advanced diagnostic tools to pinpoint any problems quickly and accurately—so your care can start as soon as possible.

Health Risk Assessments

Find out how healthy you are by taking our FREE online health risk assessments:



When you suspect a heart attack, a fast, precise diagnosis is critical. Our accredited Chest Pain Center consistently meets the national standards for door-to-balloon times, the interval between a heart patient's arrival in the ER and completion of a procedure to open a blocked artery.

Stroke patients benefit from our accredited Primary Stroke Center, a certification from the Joint Commission that recognizes our exceptional efforts to produce better outcomes.

Advanced Technology for Heart & Vascular Diagnosis

When you choose Portsmouth, you have access to highly sophisticated diagnostic tools and services, delivered with your safety and comfort in mind. You'll benefit from:

  • Cardiac catheterization labs allowing us to diagnose heart conditions 24/7 and often treat them on the spot
  • The ability to conduct cardiac and vascular studies simultaneously
  • A dedicated electrophysiology (EP) lab for diagnosing and treating heart rhythm disorders
  • Advanced technology such as:
    • Advanced MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) including our new, leading-edge 3T-High Resolution MRI—offering high-speed, high-definition imaging of the heart and blood vessels—and MRI for patients who may feel claustrophobic during traditional MRI.
    • Hybrid operating room allowing us to perform complex, minimally invasive procedures

Cardiac & Vascular Tests and Imaging

Your cardiovascular care at Portsmouth may involve one or more of the following procedures:

  • Angiography – Uses X-rays to create images of the inside of vessels surrounding the heart
  • Cardiac catheterization – A minimally invasive procedure that employs a small catheter tube and X-rays to see inside the heart and blood vessels
  • Echocardiogram (ECHO) – Uses high-frequency sound waves to create video images of the heart and blood vessels; types of echocardiograms include color flow, Doppler, intraoperative, stress and transesophageal (TEE)
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG) – Measures the electrical activity of the heart
  • Electroencephalogram (EEG) – Uses sensors to evaluate the brain's electrical activity, also called brain waves
  • Electrophysiology (EP) study – Studies the heart's electrical system to diagnose and treat abnormal heart rhythms
  • Evoked potential testing – Measures the brain's electrical response to signals sent by nerves
  • Holter monitoring – Records the heart's electrical signals through electrodes attached to the chest
  • PET scanning/nuclear (molecular) medicine – Use small amounts of radioactive material to assess blood flow and other cardiac activity
  • Pulmonary function testing – Measures your breathing to determine how well your lungs work
  • Saphenous vein mapping – Assesses the suitability of a vein for use in bypass surgery
  • Segmental blood pressures – Monitors blood pressure in each leg to test for possible obstructions in your arteries
  • Stress tests – Monitors heart rate, rhythm and blood pressure to determine how well the heart manages exercise; may be combined with echocardiograms (stress echo tests) or nuclear medicine
  • Vascular testing – Employs a comprehensive range of noninvasive procedures to determine blood flow and circulation or blockages in vessels outside the heart
  • Ultrasound – Uses high-frequency sound waves to create video images of the heart and blood vessels