What Is Cardiology And Who Does It Help?
Internal medicine includes a specialty called cardiology. The medical specialty of cardiology focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of conditions that affect the heart and blood arteries. A cardiologist is a specialist who treats people who have problems with their hearts and other cardiovascular systems.
The diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting the cardiovascular system are the primary focuses of a cardiologist’s practice. Cardiologists provide tests and operations such as cardiac catheterizations, angioplasty, and pacemaker insertion.
When To See A Cardiologist?
The field of cardiology is concerned with heart health. If a person’s primary care doctor suspects that their patient may have a cardiac disease, the cardiologist is the appropriate specialist to consult. Some of the following are examples of symptoms that may point to a cardiac problem:
- a feeling of difficulty breathing
- chest pains
- alterations in the pace or rhythm of the heart
- hypertension; high blood pressure
Tests to determine if a patient has a cardiac murmur or an irregular heart rhythm may be performed by a cardiologist.
Patients who have suffered from heart attacks, heart failure, and several other heart-related conditions are a common patient population for them to treat. They contribute to the process of deciding whether heart surgery is needed, cardiac catheterization, angioplasty, or stenting.
The following are examples of disorders of the heart that may be treated by a cardiologist:
- atrial fibrillation
- illness of the heart present at birth
- disease of the coronary arteries
- illness of the congestive heart
- elevated levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood
- ventricular tachycardia
- hypertension, often known as high blood pressure
- The cardiologist can provide guidance on how to avoid developing heart disease.
If a patient has diabetes, a history of smoking, high cholesterol, or is beginning a new fitness regimen, they may need to visit a cardiologist even if they are not experiencing any symptoms.
If a woman has had pre-eclampsia, she may have an increased chance of developing heart issues later in pregnancy or when going through the menopause.
What Is Involved In Cardiology?
A physical exam and a study of the patient’s medical history are both components of a cardiologist’s diagnostic process. In addition to doing various tests, they could examine the patient’s blood pressure, blood vessels, heart rate, and weight.
Procedures including coronary angioplasty and stenting, valvuloplasty and repair of congenital heart defects, are all within the scope of practice for an interventional cardiologist.
The catheterization lab’s machinery gives the attending physician a clear view of the patient’s heart at. To monitor the heart’s electrical activity, a patient will undergo an electrocardiogram (also called an electrocardiogram or EKG).
Ambulatory electrocardiogram: This kind of ECG captures a person’s cardiac rhythms while they are engaged in physical activity or their daily routine. A Holter monitor is used to record the rhythms, and it records them by sticking small metal electrodes to the chest and then connecting those electrodes to cables that go to the monitor.
An exercise test, often known as a stress test, monitors the variations in a person’s heart rate between resting and engaging in physical activity. This evaluates the capabilities of the heart as well as its limits.
An echocardiogram is an ultrasound that displays an image of the heart’s chambers and their surrounding structures and may reveal the heart’s health and efficiency.
Echocardiography can evaluate cardiac output, or how efficiently the heart pumps blood throughout the body. It can identify pericarditis, which is an inflammation that occurs around the heart. Additionally, it may detect structural cardiac defects and heart valve infections.
Nuclear imaging methods, often known as nuclear cardiology, make use of radioactive materials to conduct noninvasive research on a variety of cardiovascular problems and illnesses. Infarction, SPECT, planar, and perfusion imaging are examples.
In the field of cardiology, a specialization known as cardiac electrophysiology may be found. The doctor will investigate how the electric currents that run through the cardiac muscle tissue operate, how they propagate throughout the tissue, and what the patterns of the currents indicate. It’s possible that the cardiologist may suggest getting a pacemaker.
In an electrophysiology study (EPS), a catheter is placed into a leg vein. It travels to the heart while being monitored via fluoroscopy the whole route. A catheter is inserted into the heart to measure the electrical impulses there.
Keep in mind that A cardiologist and a cardiac surgeon are two different types of medical professionals. Many cardiologist jobs are available through services to help place these doctors in the field.