Heart Sound Recorder Testing
At LeMay Chiropractic & Wellness, we believe in offering patients the best services to help them lead a naturally healthy life.
In addition to chiropractic care, and other nutritional tools like the ZYTO machine and Tanita scale, we are proud to offer the Heart Sound Recorder (HSR) as a fantastic, time-tested device for monitoring cardiovascular stress for men, women and children.
What is a Heart Sound Recorder machine?
The Heart Sound Recorder is a computer-based, low risk, general wellness monitor which uses the principles of auscultation to acquire, display, record and save heart sounds. Auscultation is the action of listening to sounds from the heart, lungs, or other organs, typically with a stethoscope, as part of a medical diagnosis. This used to be common practice in medical care, and it is still an unbelievably valuable tool to assess heart health.
The unique aspect of the HSR is that instead of a stethoscope the machine uses an accelerometer to measure heart sounds, which allows the computer to pick up on a wider variety of sounds than can be heard by the human ear. An accelerometer is a device that measures the vibration, or acceleration of motion of a structure. During an HSR test, the accelerometer is translating the dynamic acceleration (beating) of the heart into a voltage measurement that the tester can read and interpret. The HSR is specifically looking at the mechanical function of the heart as it beats and accelerates through space whereas an electrocardiograph (EKG) is measuring the electrical function of the heart.
An EKG records only the surface electrical impulses as they move through the nerves of the heart tissue. Its purpose is primarily to indicate if the heart tissue has undergone any trauma or permanent damage on an electrical basis. The EKG does not analyze valvular function, muscle efficiency, motor nerve function or blood viscosity. The EKG’s sole purpose is to diagnose disease, while the HSR looks at your heart function to analyze nutrient deficiency, improve health and improve longevity.
The HSR, in my opinion, is a lifesaver! I am all for preventing disease from ever getting started, as well as correcting any deficiencies that have developed so that my patients can live vibrant long lives. That’s what the HSR helps me to do.
Why should I get an HSR test?
The #1 killer in the US is heart disease. According to the CDC in 2019, in the United States:
- Someone has a heart attack every 40 seconds.
- One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease.
- About 655,000 Americans die from heart disease each year—that’s 1 in every 4 deaths.
- About 1 in 5 heart attacks is silent—the damage is done, but the person is not aware of it.
What’s worse, it can be very hard to detect early signs of an inefficient heart. Many people are unaware there is any issue with their heart at all until some major event, like a heart attack, lands them in the hospital…that’s if they survive it! The HSR is a great tool for looking at the nuances of how the heart beats and determining early challenges that might not be obvious on other types of cardiac exams/tests.
Every day, your heart beats 100,000 times, sending 2,000 gallons of blood surging through your body. This means that there are a lot of opportunities for the heart to beat inefficiently or poorly depending on your heart health. Your heart is the most important muscle in the body and it is the first muscle that responds to nutrition. Your heart absorbs nutrients very quickly because your body is primarily concerned with keeping it beating!
During the HSR test the accelerometer microphone will be placed over each of the four valve areas of the heart to graph the sound and movement of the heart so that the rate, rhythm, and tone of the heart may be evaluated by the tester.
Certain types of heart stress can be monitored by seeing the rate, rhythm, and tone of the heart cycle.
1. Heart Rate – Is it too fast, too slow, or just right?
Your Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) controls the RATE at which your heart beats. The rate of your heart is how fast or slow your heart beats. The optimal resting heart rate is 60-80 beats per minute. One side of your nervous system (sympathetic) manages your “fight or flight” response and can accelerate your heart rate. The other side (parasympathetic) manages your “rest and digest” response and can slow your heart rate. You need to have a healthy balance between the two.
2. Heart Rhythm – is it beating in an efficient or inefficient pattern?
The RHYTHM of your heart pertains to how regular your heart beats. There are two heartbeat sounds, “lub” and “dub”, which should beat in a steady, consistent rhythm. The sounds of the heart should have a specific work to rest ratio. Observations using the HSR can be made to see if your heart is working too hard, or not working hard enough. The rhythm of your heart can be supported with proper nutrition and essential nutrients, which will help balance heart sounds and function.
3.) Heart Tone: Is it STRONG enough with no signs of weakness? Or is there a need for improvement?
The TONE of your heart refers to the strength of the ventricular contractions. This includes the opening and closing of the heart chambers. Using the HSR, we can observe the tone of your heart based on the height and width of the “lub dub” sounds, as displayed on the graph, which show how efficiently, or inefficiently, your ventricles are ejecting during systole.
At your HSR test, we will begin by taking a health history if you are not already a patient. We may ask questions about your family’s health to ensure we have all the necessary information to make an accurate assessment.
At your visit, you will speak with both Dr. LeMay, DC, ACN and Shelise Irby, RD (Registered Dietitian), allowing you to ask any questions you have—in fact, we encourage it!
We are proud to work with a licensed dietician who will analyze your results and show you exactly what the test results point to. After our dietitian administers the test and goes over the analysis, we will make our supplement and lifestyle recommendations for your unique needs.
The test is entirely non-invasive, quick, painless and takes about 30 minutes for the complete recording and evaluation by our dietitian. Your time with Dr. LeMay will be about 5-10 minutes, at no extra charge!
Approximately 4 to 8 weeks later, we can record your heart sounds again to see if there has been an improvement after taking the suggested supplements and implementing the lifestyle modifications—most patients find that there absolutely is! The true benefit of an HSR test is having the ability to compare scans before and after applying lifestyle and nutritional changes that can influence the heart. This gives us objective evidence to see if we are on the right track!
Based on your unique heart sound analysis we will provide you with nutritional counseling, dietary advice, stress reduction techniques, supplement recommendations, and exercise considerations to improve your quality of life and support the physiological processes of your body.
The HSR graph can be an important tool in evaluating your overall health and then in following the progress you are making when under proper nutritional care.
1.) Call our office at (916) 965-8171 and tell us you would like to get your, or a family member’s, heart tested. People of all ages can be tested and you do not need to be a current patient of ours to get tested. All you need is a willingness to be ready to take the necessary actions to get better!
2.) Mail in or drop off a check for $50 per person as your deposit for the HSR test. If you attend your appointment on time, this deposit will be applied to the $50 cost for the test. If you cancel less than 48 hours before your appointment, you will forfeit your deposit. Cash is also accepted, but must be dropped off at the office – do not mail any cash amount to the office. Unfortunately, we cannot accept credit card payments for HSR testing.
Interested in Learning More?
We’d love to help you take control of your health. Contact us today to get a custom care plan designed for your specific needs. We can’t wait to welcome you into our care.