Cardiology  

Cardiology is the study and treatment of disorders of the heart and the blood vessels. A person with heart disease or cardiovascular disease may be referred to a cardiologist. Cardiology is a branch of internal medicine. A cardiologist is not the same as a cardiac surgeon

Acute Coronary Syndrome

The acute coronary syndrome is a term used for any condition brought on by sudden, reduced blood flow to the heart. The acute coronary syndrome can describe chest pain you feel during a heart attack, or chest pain you feel while you’re at rest or doing light physical activity (unstable angina). The acute coronary syndrome is often diagnosed in an emergency room or hospital. The acute coronary syndrome is treatable if diagnosed quickly. Acute coronary syndrome treatments vary, depending on your signs, symptoms, and overall health condition.

 ResearchGate Diagnostic algorithm for acute coronary syndrom

ResearchGate Diagnostic algorithm for acute coronary syndromes

Aortic Valve Replacement

Aortic valve replacement is a cardiac surgery procedure in which a patient’s failing aortic valve is replaced with an alternate healthy valve. The aortic valve can be affected by a range of diseases; the valve can either become leaky (aortic insufficiency/regurgitation) or partially blocked (aortic stenosis). Aortic valve replacement is open-heart surgery

Arrhythmia

In an arrhythmia, the heartbeats may be too slow, too rapid, too irregular, or too early. Rapid arrhythmias (greater than 100 beats per minute) are called tachycardias. Slow arrhythmias (slower than 60 beats per minute) are called bradycardias. Irregular heart rhythms are called fibrillations (as in atrial fibrillation and ventricular fibrillation). When a single heartbeat occurs earlier than normal, it is called a premature contraction. The term arrhythmia comes from the Greek a-, loss + rhythms, rhythm = loss of rhythm.

Atherosclerosis

Arteries are blood vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients from your heart to the rest of your body. Healthy arteries are flexible, strong, and elastic. Over time, however, too much pressure in your arteries can make the walls thick and stiff — sometimes restricting blood flow to your organs and tissues. This process is called arteriosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries. Atherosclerosis is a specific type of arteriosclerosis, but the terms are sometimes used interchangeably. Atherosclerosis refers to the buildup of fats in and on your artery walls (plaques), which can restrict blood flow. These plaques can also burst, causing a blood clot. Although atherosclerosis is often considered a heart problem, it can affect arteries anywhere in your body. Atherosclerosis is a preventable and treatable condition.

CABG – Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery

Coronary bypass surgery is a procedure that restores blood flow to your heart muscle by diverting the flow of blood around a section of a blocked artery in your heart. Coronary bypass surgery uses a healthy blood vessel taken from your leg, arm, chest, or abdomen and connects it to the other arteries in your heart so that blood is bypassed around the diseased or blocked area. After coronary bypass surgery, normal blood flow is restored. Coronary bypass surgery is just one option to treat heart disease. Coronary bypass surgery can help reduce your risk of having a heart attack. For many people who have coronary bypass surgery, symptoms such as chest pain and shortness of breath are reduced after having the surgery.

Congestive Heart Failure CHF

Heart failure, also known as congestive heart failure (CHF), means your heart can’t pump enough blood to meet your body’s needs. Over time, conditions such as narrowed arteries in your heart (coronary artery disease) or high blood pressure gradually leave your heart too weak or stiff to fill and pump efficiently. You can’t reverse many conditions that lead to heart failure, but heart failure can often be treated with good results. Medications can improve the signs and symptoms of heart failure. Lifestyle changes, such as exercising, reducing the salt in your diet, managing stress, treating depression, and especially losing excess weight, can improve your quality of life. The best way to prevent heart failure is to control risk factors and conditions that cause heart failures, such as coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes or obesity.

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT/PE)

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a condition in which a blood clot (thrombus) forms in one or more of the deep veins in your body, usually in your legs. Deep vein thrombosis can cause leg pain, but often occurs without any symptoms. Deep vein thrombosis can develop if you’re sitting still for a long time, such as when traveling by plane or car, or if you have certain medical conditions that affect how your blood clots. Deep vein thrombosis is a serious condition because a blood clot that has formed in your vein can break loose, travel through your bloodstream and lodge in your lungs, blocking blood flow (pulmonary embolism).

Hypercholesterolemia

Cholesterol is a waxy substance that’s found in the fats (lipids) in your blood. While your body needs cholesterol to continue building healthy cells, having high cholesterol can increase your risk of heart disease. When you have high cholesterol, you may develop fatty deposits in your blood vessels. Eventually, these deposits make it difficult for enough blood to flow through your arteries. Your heart may not get as much oxygen-rich blood as it needs, which increases the risk of a heart attack. Decreased blood flow to your brain can cause a stroke. High cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia) can be inherited, but is often preventable and treatable. A healthy diet, regular exercise and sometimes medication can go a long way toward reducing high cholesterol.

Hypertension

High blood pressure is a common condition in which the force of the blood against your artery walls is high enough that it may eventually cause health problems, such as heart disease. Blood pressure is determined by the amount of blood your heart pumps and the amount of resistance to blood flow in your arteries. The more blood your heart pumps and the narrower your arteries, the higher your blood pressure. You can have high blood pressure (hypertension) for years without any symptoms. Uncontrolled high blood pressure increases your risk of serious health problems, including heart attack and stroke. High blood pressure typically develops over many years, and it affects nearly everyone eventually. Fortunately, high blood pressure can be easily detected. And once you know you have high blood pressure, you can work with your doctor to control it.

Pulmonary Hypertension

Pulmonary hypertension is a type of high blood pressure that affects only the arteries in the lungs and the right side of your heart. Pulmonary hypertension begins when tiny arteries in your lungs, called pulmonary arteries, and capillaries become narrowed, blocked or destroyed. This makes it harder for blood to flow through your lungs, which raises pressure within the arteries in your lungs. As the pressure builds, your heart’s lower right chamber (right ventricle) must work harder to pump blood through your lungs, eventually causing your heart muscle to weaken and eventually fail completely. Pulmonary hypertension is a serious illness that becomes progressively worse and is sometimes fatal. Although pulmonary hypertension isn’t curable, treatments are available that can help lessen symptoms and improve your quality of life.

Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD

Peripheral vascular disease (PVD), commonly referred to as peripheral arterial disease (PAD) or peripheral artery occlusive disease (PAOD). Peripheral artery disease is a common circulatory problem in which narrowed arteries reduce blood flow to your limbs. When you develop peripheral artery disease (PAD), your extremities — usually your legs — don’t receive enough blood flow to keep up with demand. This causes symptoms, most notably leg pain when walking (intermittent claudication). Peripheral artery disease is also likely to be a sign of a more widespread accumulation of fatty deposits in your arteries (atherosclerosis). This condition may be reducing blood flow to your heart and brain, as well as your legs. Often, you can successfully treat peripheral artery disease by quitting tobacco, exercising and eating a healthy diet.

Stroke

A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted or severely reduced, depriving brain tissue of oxygen and food. Within minutes, brain cells begin to die. A stroke is a medical emergency. Prompt treatment is crucial. Early action can minimize brain damage and potential complications. The good news is that strokes can be treated and prevented, and many fewer Americans now die of stroke than was the case even 15 years ago. Better control of major stroke risk factors — high blood pressure, smoking and high cholesterol — is likely responsible for the decline.

Myocardial Infarction (MI)

Myocardial infarction (MI) or acute myocardial infarction (AMI), commonly known as a heart attack. Myocardial infarction (MI) means that part of the heart muscle suddenly loses its blood supply. Without prompt treatment, this can lead to damage to the affected part of the heart. An MI is sometimes called a heart attack or coronary thrombosis. An MI is part of a range of disorders called acute coronary syndromes. There is a brief explanation of the term acute coronary syndrome at the end of this leaflet. There are different types of MI that are based on what is seen on your ECG (heart tracing). The two main types are called ST-elevation MI (STEMI) and non-ST elevation MI (NSTEMI). Your treatment will depend upon the type of MI you have.

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