If your doctor suspects that you might have heart failure, you may be referred to a heart doctor, or cardiologist. There are a number of diagnostic tests that cardiologists can use for patients suspected of having heart conditions. First, the cardiologist will carefully review your medical history and will conduct a risk factor analysis (consider hypertension, coronary artery disease or diabetes), he will ask if you exercise, what your diet is like, if you smoke, his physical exam includes the use of a stethoscope to listen to your heart and lungs. It’s important to be completely honest with your doctor about your lifestyle.
The doctor may order blood tests to check for abnormal levels of certain substances that may indicate that your organs are under excess strain. Chest X-rays can inform your cardiologist of whether your heart is enlarged or you have congestion in the lungs. You might also have an electrocardiogram, which reveals whether you have had a heart attack, your heart muscle wall is enlarged, or your heart rhythm is abnormal. He may also order and echocardiogram that can also give the size, shape and how well your heart is pumping in the chambers of the heart.
At Cardiac Solutions, our cardiologists near Phoenix and Avondale combine high-quality healthcare with a personal touch. Call our heart disease experts at (623) 876-8816 for more information.