A cardiologist treats diseases of the heart and blood vessels, which are the most common diseases of the modern age, and probably one of the most well-known diseases is hypertension. In order for someone to become a cardiologist, he is first of all a specialist in internal medicine and then a subspecialist in cardiology.
Cardiology checkup is painless, no preparation is required, no invasive instruments are used (stethoscope, tensiometer, ECG device are usually used). Cardiac examination lasts on average about 20-30 minutes and longer if necessary.
Team of the Pulse Cardiology Center deals with prevention, diagnostics that includes a stress test, CT coronary angiography, heart ultrasound with Color Doppler and treatment of cardiovascular disorders. We are also at your disposal at a time when you have an acute problem that requires urgent resolution.
Cardiac examination includes:
- Personal and family history
- Taking data on existing ailments and disorders, as well as data on previous diseases and detection of risk factors from vascular, endocrine, neurological, nephrological and other risk factors in patients and blood relatives). If heart disease occurs in your family, then there is a higher risk that the disease will develop based on genetic factors.
- Cardiac examination (status)
- Final opinion and determination of therapy
- Additional diagnostic procedures
Why is a heart examination necessary?
Heart disease is a term used to denote different types of heart disease. This term can include coronary artery disease, heart failure, arrhythmia, heart attack, pericarditis and congenital heart defect.
A heart test is performed to detect any signs or potential risk factors that may lead to heart disease. When the test is performed early, people with a higher risk of developing heart disease can learn to live healthier and longer.
The following cardiological examinations are offered at the Pulse Cardiology Center:
- Total heart examination
- Preoperative cardiovascular evaluation
- Special examination for smokers
- Cardiovascular risk assessment
What do cardiologist check during a heart examination?
There are various factors that a cardiologist will examine during a heart examination. In addition to the standard cardiological examination, blood analysis and diagnostics are performed. After your doctor has reviewed your baseline results, further screening may be recommended. This additional screening may include checking the electrical activity of the heart and pulse, an ultrasound of the heart, a heart stress test, and other examinations specific to a particular disease.
Blood pressure measurement
Doctors will also look at the amount of pressure your blood puts on the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps. This is what is known as blood pressure. Since many people do not experience any symptoms of high blood pressure, this test can help detect more than expected. High blood pressure is a huge risk factor for heart disease.
An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a graphical record of the electrical activity of the heart. Electrocardiography is a fast, painless and non-invasive method that registers the electrical activity of the heart, and the device that makes the graphic record is called an electrocardiograph. This method can detect various heart diseases. Recording takes a few minutes and the result is available immediately.
Echocardiography (heart ultrasound) has become a routine procedure for diagnosing and monitoring patients with heart disease. It is also one of the most commonly used diagnostic procedures in cardiology. This method can provide a large amount of information including the size and shape of the heart, the location and size of damage to the heart tissue, the appearance of heart valves.
Ergometry is the study of cardiac function under exertion (heart load test). It is a procedure that determines the influence of physical activity on heart work. A healthy person’s heart allows them to overcome significant physical stress. Ischemic heart disease significantly reduces this ability, worsening the patient’s condition during exertion. The necessity to study the cardiovascular condition of the heart is caused by the fact that some heart diseases do not manifest at rest (for example, arrhythmia and coronary artery insufficiency), which makes timely diagnosis difficult.
The Holter test is usually performed after a basic examination to check the heart rhythm, especially if the ECG (electrocardiogram) does not give the doctor enough information about the condition of your heart. The cardiologist uses the information recorded on the Holter monitor to determine if you have a heart rhythm problem. A holter is a small device that monitors your heart rhythm. The cardiologist may require you to wear a holter for 24 hours, 72 hours and up to 7 days as needed. During this time, the device records all your heartbeats.
The blood pressure monitoring holter assesses the patient’s blood pressure level during 24 hours, in a normal environment and the patient’s activities outside the doctor’s office. Blood pressure monitoring is necessary in case of reading high blood pressure in order to exclude or confirm the diagnosis of hypertension or to assess the treatment outcomes of previously diagnosed hypertension.
Computed tomography (CT scan, MSCT scan) uses computers and rotating X-ray machines to create cross-sectional images of the body. These images provide more detailed information than conventional X-rays. The images can show soft tissues, blood vessels and bones in different parts of the body. The Pulse Cardiology Center uses an Incisive CT Philips 128 slice scanner.
In cardiology, a CT scanner can be used to visualize:
- Heart – CT of the heart
- Calcium – CT calcium score (Ca score)
- Lung – CT of the lungs
- Aorta – CT of the aorta
Complete blood test
- Complete blood count with leukocytes (CBS)
- CRP (C-Reactive protein)
How often should you examine your heart?
If you have not suffered from heart disease in the past, screening for heart disease is recommended at the age of 20 and over. How often you will go for check-ups after that will depend on your risk factors and diagnosis of heart condition.
Specifically, if your blood pressure is below 120/80 mm Hg, it is recommended to be examined once every two years.
Cholesterol levels should be taken every 4 to 6 years for patients at normal risk. The sugar level should be checked at least every 3 years. CRP screening should be performed on patients with a 10 to 20% chance of heart attack.
Going for a heart exam is the only way to find out if you are at risk for heart disease. Since every fourth death is caused by heart disease, it is better to know the condition of your heart.