Routine tests prior to cardioversion
A heart tracing (ECG, electrocardiogram) records the heart rhythm. An ultrasound scan of the heart (ECHO, echocardiogram) assesses the structure and function of the heart muscle and valves to identify underlying causes of heart rhythm disturbances. Blood tests check the blood strength (Hb, Haemoglobin) and biochemical screen (U&E, Urea and Electrolytes) are is satisfactory prior to admission for cardioversion. A nasal swab (MRSA screen) checks you are not carrying infections that could be passed on to others in hospital). Anticoagulation clinic monitoring for patients on warfarin (INR, International normalised ratio) checks your blood is thin enough to reduce the risk of a stroke. Aim to maintain the INR between 2.5 and 3.5 in the 4 weeks prior to cardioversion. If your INR drops below 2.0, please notify Dr Appleby’s PA as we may need to reschedule the date for cardioversion. INR monitoring is not needed with rivaroxaban, but notify Dr Appleby’s PA if you have omitted any doses.