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When Should You See a Cardiologist?

The heart is the most important muscle in your body! And so, heart problems can become a major spoiler to one’s general health and wellbeing. Heart diseases can present with a range of symptoms – from mild innocuous symptoms such as an epigastric pain to debilitating symptoms like syncope or a sudden collapse. It is often hard to distinguish symptoms which are harmless from those which can be life-threatening.

Very often, patients ignore their symptoms until it is too late even for their heart specialist, otherwise called a cardiologist, to find a suitable solution. It is therefore important for you to identify symptoms and risk factors which may indicate a serious heart condition and consult a cardiologist before it is too late.

Following are some of the reasons you may want to see a cardiologist:

Family history of Congenital Heart Disease:

If you have any family member with a congenital heart disease, you may want to find out if you have similar symptoms and consult a cardiologist to rule out any heart disease.

Family history of Acquired Heart Diseases:

Even acquired heart diseases seem to have a genetic linkage. For example, if anyone in your family has hypertension or a heart attack, you are at an increased risk of the same and should consider a cardiologist’s opinion.

Doctor’s Recommendation:

If your family physician or any other doctor has recommended a cardiological evaluation or consultation, don’t ignore it because he/she might have found out some risk factors for heart disease, or a heart disease itself. Discuss with the physician and follow his advise before it is too late!

Cardiac Chest Pain:

Most people have suffered chest pain for varied reasons, at least once in their lifetime. It may be of cardiac or non cardiac origin. Chest pain which originates in the heart is often felt as a severe pressure, squeezing, pain or discomfort in the chest which may or may not spread to the shoulders, neck, arms, jaw or the upper back. It may become more intense with time and is not relieved by rest.

Chest Pain

Cardiac chest pain may be accompanied by low blood pressure, sweating, paleness, cool, clammy skin, nausea or vomiting, dizziness or fainting, weakness or fatigue that is unexplained or a rapid, irregular pulse or palpitation. If you have any of the above symptoms, be sure to check up with a cardiologist without delay.

Risk factors of Heart Disease:

High blood cholesterol along with high blood pressure is considered a given risk factor for heart disease and may require you to evaluate the status of your heart by a cardiologist. A smoker is also at an increased risk of heart attacks as it is known to reduce flow of oxygen to the heart, increases blood pressure, heart rate and a tendency of the blood to clot within the arteries by damaging the lining of the arteries.

Diabetes, besides causing symptoms of its own, is a hotbed of complications, one of which is heart disease. If you have diabetes, get yourself evaluated by a cardiologist to detect any complications early. Gum disease can be an indicator of a hidden heart ailment. Get your heart checked by a cardiologist.

Before starting an Exercise Routine:

Not all exercises can be done by everybody. Rigorous exercises can often unmask a cardiac condition. Therefore, before starting an exercise routine, you may want to check with a cardiologist, particularly if you are over 40 years of age. A cardiologist will be able to recommend you exercises good for your heart.

Final Words of Advice

Heart diseases have the power to kill or to make your life miserable. It is best to identify any symptoms or risk factors early on and see a cardiologist to prevent complications. If in doubt or if recommended by a doctor, consult a cardiologist before it is too late!

So, when should you see a Cardiologist? When your heart tells you to! (pun intended)

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• Meet the Author • Dr. Lawrence Kindo

I am a Medical Professional with a passion for writing, blogging, playing, computers, and of course patient care. My writing in this medical blog will reflect my passion, and you are welcome to be a part of this venture. This medical blog is a tribute to all the great medical pioneers, and to the ultimate source of wisdom, God.

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