Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

Do I Have Heart Trouble?

Monday, 11 June 2012 07:46 AM

Question: How can I know if I'm having heart trouble? I have had several EKGs, and they all were good. I also wore a Holter monitor, but it didn't find anything. Sometimes I have to take a deep breath or yawn. I noticed this about a month ago, but it has been happening more since the pharmacy gave me the wrong medicine — a blood pressure pill, which I took for two weeks, instead of my Lipitor.
Dr. Hibberd's Answer:
You are not expected to know. It is your doctor's responsibility to explain medical matters to you, and to be sure you understand your treatment plan.
There are two lessons to be learned here:
1) ALWAYS know the medicines you take, NEVER accept a substitution without consulting your doctor, and always ask questions before taking any new pills
2) If you are concerned about heart disease, please TELL YOUR DOCTOR. Sometimes your concerns are not always clear to your doctor. The tests you have received may be appropriate screens for some low-risk patients, but higher-risk patients need further evaluation and/or cardiology consultation if heart disease is suspected. Ask your doctor for a referral to cardiology for appropriate stress testing — there are many choices, and some may be more appropriate than others for you.

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