Inferior Q-wave on my pre-op EKG

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Submitted by Dr T on March 18, 2011 – 12:39pm

After having a pre-surgery EKG, the surgeon told me I have an inferior Q-wave and wants to refer me to a cardiologist.  I am working on making an appt so I hopefully won’t delay surgery but was very curious and a little concerned in the meanwhile.  I am a non-smoker (quit 14 yrs ago when I became pregnant), non drinker 40 year old woman.  I do not have HTN or DM.  I am obese but am working on it and in the last year lost 50lbs.  The surgeon said the inferior q-wave usually indicates a past MI or current.  Is this true? Could this delay or even forbid my surgery?  If it is of importance, I am having a reaux and Y gastric bypass. Thanks for your time and have a wonderful day.

While the vast majority of abnormal Q waves are due to myocardial infarction (MI), a significant number are due to other causes. It  depends on how “big” the Q wave is.

This is best checked via a cardiology consultation, a stress ECHO, and probably a CTCA Scan. If you had an MI in the past, you can also calculate your risk for heart disease.

If no serious heart disease is found and your heart function is OK, it is highly unlikely that your surgery gets canceled. However, a Roux-en-Y gastric Bypass is a big operation, and thus more likely to cause troubles if a person has Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). Therefore it is wise, to get checked out beforehand!

Hope this helps,
Dr T

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