Cardiology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the heart as well as parts of the circulatory system. The field includes medical diagnosis and treatment of congenital heart defects, coronary artery disease, heart failure, valvular heart disease and electrophysiology. Physicians who specialize in this field of medicine are called cardiologists, a specialty of internal medicine. Physicians who specialize in cardiac surgery are called cardiothoracic surgeons or cardiac surgeons, a specialty of general surgery.
Whether the cardiologist sees you in the office or in the hospital, he or she will review your medical history and perform a physical examination which may include checking your blood pressure, weight, heart, lungs, and blood vessels. Some problems may be diagnosed by your symptoms and the doctor’s findings when you are examined. You may need additional tests such as an ECG, x-ray, or blood test. Other problems will require more specialized testing. Your cardiologist may recommend lifestyle changes or medicine. Each patient’s case is unique.