Houstonians are very lucky to have a variety of cardiologists to choose from, but it can be difficult to make the decision on which one is the perfect fit for you. We’ve created this guide to help you find the best cardiologist for your health care needs in Houston.
Houston is home to some of the top-ranked medical facilities in all of Texas, with many cardiologists vying for their spot near its top. It’s only natural that Houstonians will want outstanding medical care from some of Houston’s best doctors. Cardiologist Houston is a physician who specializes in diagnosing and treating diseases of the heart and blood vessels. This includes coronary disease (such as heart attacks and angina), cardiac arrhythmias (abnormal heartbeats), congenital heart disease, and hypertension (high blood pressure). Cardiologists also perform open-heart surgery and valvular surgery. They help their patients lead healthy lives by managing their individual conditions, whether it be through preventative care, patient education, or surgical interventions such as coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG). Furthermore, cardiologists use diagnostic tools such as echocardiograms to create images of the heart for an improved understanding of abnormalities or defects.
Cardiologists make up the heart and vascular surgeon specialists. They take care of patients with heart and blood vessel (vascular) diseases and conditions and perform open-heart surgeries. Some of the treatments they provide include:
Electrophysiology – This specialty includes procedures to correct abnormal heart rhythms, such as ventricular tachycardia (rapid heartbeat) or atrial flutter (irregular heartbeat). Electrophysiologists can also help determine why a patient has suffered a stroke. Treatment options include implantation of an electric cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), pacemaker, or other devices to correct cardiac issues.
Cardiac Catheterization – This specialty involves the insertion of a thin, flexible tube (catheter) into the heart through a small incision in an artery in the groin or arm. Cardiac catheterization can provide information about blood flow, blockages, pressures on valves and chambers, and other information helpful to the heart specialist.
Cardiovascular Surgery – This specialty includes open-heart surgeries on very sick patients that cannot be treated by methods other than open-heart surgeries. Some of these operations may include repair, replacement, or bypassing of heart valves; reconstructing damaged coronary arteries; repairing ruptured aortas; and removing blockages in arteries.
The most common heart conditions cardiologists treat are hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), and coronary artery disease (CAD). There are several types of CAD that cardiologists can treat. Stable angina is the most common form of CAD with symptoms that include chest pain during exertion, shortness of breath, and irregular heart rate. Stroke is another type of CAD that can be treated by a cardiologist. Angina can cause hardening or narrowing of the main arteries leading to the heart muscle. A clot or plaque can lodge in this area causing blockages to occur. A cardiologist can perform angioplasty or coronary artery stenting to help alleviate blockages. Additionally, cardiologists who specialize in electrophysiology can treat other heart conditions.
The American Heart Association notes that more than one million Americans have been affected by cardiovascular diseases and conditions every year, and many of these patients have been treated by a cardiologist. In fact, according to the American Cardiovascular Association, more than 5 times as many people die from heart disease as from any cancer. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women with over 400,000 deaths occurring annually.
A cardiologist’s knowledge goes beyond the heart and blood vessels. They will treat other areas of the body as well including:
The American Society of Echocardiography (ASE) is a professional and scientific organization related to and dedicated to echocardiography. They provide echocardiography for medical personnel, healthcare professionals, and the general public. This includes taking ultrasound images of heart chambers called echocardiograms or ultrasonography images. An echocardiogram is used as a tool to diagnose subtle heart issues as well as correct problems such as valvular abnormalities (valve replacements) and valve stenosis (narrowing or blockage).