What is cardiology?

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Having a healthy heart is essential for a healthy life. Various elements can make a person sick and prevent them from leading a productive life. Some factors can affect heart health, and such conditions require specialised people to study the problem and treat them accordingly.

A cardiologist is known as a person who studies and specialises in diagnosing problems related to the heart and surrounding arteries.

What is Cardiology?

Overview

Cardiology is the study of disorders relating to the heart and the blood vessels. It is a branch of medicine that deals with the study, diagnosis and treatment of the problems arising in the body’s cardiovascular system.

A cardiologist would identify what is wrong with a heart to treat them accordingly. Cardiology is of three types, namely invasive, non-invasive, and interventional. A doctor would use one or more combinations to identify and treat heart conditions.

What are the symptoms of a cardiovascular health condition?

Some of the common symptoms a person with a heart condition can exhibit are as follows

  • Breathlessness
  • Dizziness
  • Chest pain
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • High BP
  • Numbness
  • Pain in the arms or legs
  • Fluttering in the chest
  • Racing heartbeat
  • Slow heartbeat
  • Discomfort in the chest and
  • Lightheadedness

A cardiologist can also help a person understand how to keep the heart healthy and prevent heart diseases.

 A cardiologist examines a patient’s medical history using various methods to determine the health condition. A cardiologist can carry out procedures like angioplasty, stenting and coronary thrombectomies to help treat a person.

Some of the ways of diagnosis that are carried out by a cardiologist include

Electrocardiogram

An electrocardiogram is a test performed by a doctor to record the electrical activities of the heart. It is a simple procedure to check the heart’s rhythm and electrical activity. Sensors are attached to the skin that detects the heart’s electrical signals every time it beats.

Holter monitor

A Holter monitor is a device that is used for cardiac monitoring. Holter monitor utilises electrodes and a recording device to track a person’s heart for up to 72 hours.

Echocardiogram

The echocardiogram provides ultrasound pictures of the heart displaying the chamber and surrounding areas to show how well a heart is functioning.

Stress test 

This test is an exercise or a set of practices performed to study how their heart work during physical activity.

Cardiac catheterisation

During the cardiac catheterisation procedure, a small tube is inserted near the heart that collects data that can help relieve a blockage. The tube with the camera can take pictures, check the heart’s normal functioning, and measure the electrical system during functioning.

CT scan

CT scan produces an image of the heart and helps the cardiologist deter heart disease or other health conditions.

MRI scan

During an MRI scan, a strong magnetic field and high-frequency radio waves produce detailed images of the heart that can help a cardiologist identify the problem.

Blood test

Unit of blood or sample of blood is taken and various tests are done to evaluate a person’s health condition.

All the above tests can help a cardiologist identify various problems relating to the heart.

What are the general causes of cardiac diseases?

Cardiovascular diseases arise from various factors or health conditions that can cause problems to the heart.

Some of the causes of cardiac diseases or as follows

  • Heart defects
  • Congenital heart defects
  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Heart damage
  • Alcoholism
  • Medications
  • Hypertension and
  • Use of substances.

Some heart defects are present at birth and are called congenital heart defects. Unhealthy lifestyle practices of a person causes most cardiovascular diseases.

Treatment of cardiac diseases

Treatment of cardiovascular diseases depends on various factors, including their cause and symptoms.

Initially, a doctor would identify the cause and then analyse the condition accordingly.

The treatment of cardiovascular diseases falls under a few categories like surgery, medication and lifestyle changes.

Surgical procedure

In some cases of heart conditions, surgeries are required to treat the person and prevent the symptoms from worsening.

Some procedures require surgical intervention depending upon the heart disease and the extent of the damage it causes.

A doctor or healthcare provider will decide if surgery or other procedure is required to improve a person’s health. With the help of surgery few devices like a pacemaker are placed inside a heart to prevent irregular heartbeats.

Stents are used to treat blockage. With the help of heart surgeries, a surgeon places a stent in places required depending on the type of problem a patient experiences.

Medications

A doctor prescribes medications to treat various cardiovascular diseases. Over-the-counter medications are used to combat health conditions that can damage the heart.

Such medications can help slow down the risk of further health complications. The medicines prescribed by a doctor vary depending on the type of health condition and the severity of the symptoms.

 Lifestyle changes

Adopting a healthy lifestyle will improve a person’s overall health and eliminate or reduce the chances of developing acute or chronic health conditions. A healthy lifestyle can also help a person manage their health condition and prevent it from further degradation.

Specifically for heart health, consuming a low-sodium diet and including fruits, vegetables, and lean protein is essential to reduce the chances of developing cardiovascular diseases.

As a result of poor diet and lack of exercise, bad cholesterol, also known as LDL cholesterol, can accumulate in the arteries. When LDL cholesterol accumulates in the arteries, it can cause heart diseases and increase the chances of a heart attack or stroke.

It is essential to exercise regularly and keep the bad cholesterol level at a minimum. Also, a person can prevent hypertension or other blood-related issues by following a healthy diet.

A person’s lifestyle can lead to further complications of developing severe cardiovascular health conditions.

What are the complications involved?

Having a poor lifestyle can complicate a person’s health. Suppose symptoms of cardiovascular diseases are left unnoticed and are not appropriately treated, it can lead to fatal health conditions like heart attack, heart failure, stroke, artery disease or cardiac arrest.

It is crucial to notice the symptoms as early as possible and provide treatment accordingly.

What are the risks of developing cardiovascular conditions?

Some of the people who are at risk of cardiovascular health conditions are vulnerable to various factors like

How to prevent such health conditions?

Even if some of the risk factors cannot be controlled, there are some ways in which a person can lower the chances of developing poor heart health.  

Quit smoking

Smoking is injurious to health. By ditching the bud, a person can improve their health significantly.

Managing BP and other health conditions

Control over health conditions like high blood pressure or high cholesterol can affect heart health. Keeping track of such numbers and maintaining them optimally can benefit the heart.

Diabetes can cause various harmful health complications to a person. Therefore, it is crucial to maintain an optimal blood glucose level in the body.

Exercise

Exercise is the key to heart health. Performing exercises for at least 30 minutes a day can have sound effects in improving heart health.

Proper diet

Consuming low-sodium food is essential to keep the heart happy. Foods that contain a high amount of saturated fat must be kept at bay to prevent the formation of bad cholesterol in the arteries that can damage heart health.

Weight management

Obesity can be troublesome for a person. Being obese opens the chances of developing unwanted health complications and is terrible for the heart.

Maintaining a healthy or optimal weight is essential to improve a person’s overall health and is also beneficial for the bones and joints.

Stress management

Stress is very harmful to the body and can improve the chances of getting heart disease.

For anyone, it is essential to efficiently manage stress and other negative feelings for the benefit of the body.

To sum up

Cardiology is the study of disorders relating to the heart and the blood vessel, and having a healthy heart is essential to prevent fatal health complications.

Many people can enjoy a quality life by managing their health condition with the help of a cardiologist. Only diagnosis and treatment are the keys to treating heart diseases.

Making the prescribed changes and taking medications can help manage her health conditions and improve her quality of life.

FAQ

Who is a cardiologist?

A cardiologist is a person who studies and specialises in diagnosing and treating problems related to the heart and the surrounding arteries.

What is a heart attack?

The blockage of blood flow to the heart is known as a heart attack. When a part of the heart muscle does not get enough blood, it leads to complications like strokes, attacks and other fatal health conditions.
 A heart attack is a medical emergency, and it requires immediate treatment.

What is stress testing?

Stress testing is also an exercise stress test that helps a doctor understand how a person’s heart works during physical activity.

What is an echocardiogram?

An echocardiogram, also known as echocardiography, is an ultrasound of the heart. This test is done to get a graphical outline of the heart moment that helps a doctor understand and study the functioning of a heart.

What is the main purpose of cardiology?

The main purpose of cardiology is to study and treat the disorders of the heart and the blood vessel.

What should I know about cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a wax-like substance that is found in the blood. The body requires cholesterol to build healthy cells, but high cholesterol levels can increase the chances of developing heart diseases.


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