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What is a cardiologist? A cardiologist is a doctor of the heart that diagnoses and treats heart diseases and cardiovascular diseases.

When to visit

When would you see cardiologist? Cardiologist consultations are typically recommended by a patient’s primary care physician in response to either heightened risk factors for cardiovascular disease or symptoms that indicate it may already be present.

What to expect

What would you expect at a visit to a cardiologist? When you visit a cardiologist, first you will have your vital signs (blood pressure, pulse, etc.) checked by the staff. Then the cardiologist will come into the room and talk to you about your symptoms. The examination may include checking your blood pressure again, checking your pulse, listening to your heart with the stethoscope, checking for lower extremity swelling, etc. He/she will also do an electrocardiogram (EKG). Further testing may be required based on the results of the exam, labs and EKG. The cardiologist may want to check an echocardiogram, which is an ultrasound of the heart. He/she may also want to place you on a heart monitor for 24 hours to determine the rate and rhythm of your heart over time.

How often to visit

How often should you visit a cardiologist? If a patient has heart disease, the cardiologist would want to see him/her every three to six months. 

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