When it comes to heart specialists, there are several different types. These include clinical cardiologists, interventional cardiologists, cardio-oncologists, cardiac surgeons, and others.
Each of these cardiologists plays a unique and indispensable role in optimizing your heart health. Among these specialized professionals, interventional cardiologists are heroes of the catheterization lab. They have expertise in diagnosing and treating a wide range of cardiovascular conditions using minimally invasive procedures.
Here’s a brief understanding of the interventional cardiologists and what they do.
What Are Interventional Cardiologists?
An interventional cardiologist is a physician who practices interventional cardiology and specializes in diagnosing and treating heart conditions and diseases using minimally invasive techniques, such as catheterization.
Catheters are very small tubes that your cardiologist puts through your blood vessels. This prevents the need for invasive surgeries.
Interventional cardiologists are educated and trained to perform complex diagnostic tests and procedures to get to the heart of the problem.
It’s pertinent to mention here that the main focus of interventional cardiologists is to make sure that the blood in your body flows the way it should.
What Tests an Interventional Cardiologist Orders or Performs?
An interventional cardiologist can order or perform the following tests to identify and fix issues that get in the way of your blood flow.
Computed Tomography (CT) of Coronary Arteries
This non-invasive imaging test is used to visualize the coronary arteries, which supply blood to the heart muscle. It can help identify areas of fat or calcium deposits (plaques) that are narrowing the arteries and restricting blood flow.
An intracardiac echocardiogram is an ultrasound test that produces images of the heart from inside the heart chambers. A thin, flexible tube (catheter) with an ultrasound probe at its tip is inserted into a blood vessel and guided to the heart.
This test provides detailed information about the structure and function of the heart valves and chambers and guides other diagnostic and treatment procedures.
Heart MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)
A heart MRI is a non-invasive test that can provide information about the size and shape of the heart, its ability to pump blood, damage to the heart muscle, and problems with the heart’s valves and other structures.
A chest X-ray is a quick and painless test that uses radiation to produce images of the heart, lungs, and other structures in the chest. It can reveal signs of heart failure, lung disorders, and other conditions.
Common Procedures an Interventional Cardiologist Performs
Here are some common procedures that an interventional radiologist performs to identify or address cardiovascular problems.
This involves inserting a catheter into the heart through an artery to view the coronary arteries on a monitor. The procedure enables the cardiologist to determine if any blockages or damage to heart arteries exist.
This procedure uses a small balloon catheter to open up blocked arteries, improving blood flow. It can be done on its own, or it can include the insertion of a stent or tube to keep the artery propped open.
Coronary Atherectomy (Plaque Removal)
This procedure is used to remove plaque from the walls of narrowed coronary arteries.
This is performed after an atherectomy or angioplasty. This involves placing a small, mesh-like device into an artery that stays in the artery permanently to hold it open and decrease its chance of narrowing again.
Fractional Flow Reserve (FFR)
FFR is a minimally invasive procedure to determine how bad the narrowing (stenosis) is in your coronary arteries.
Heart Valve Replacement
This involves replacing an individual’s too-narrow, stiff, or leaky valve with a mechanical or biological valve.
Common Conditions an Interventional Cardiologist Treats
An interventional cardiologist treats a wide range of conditions that affect your heart and blood vessels, such as:
- Aortic valve stenosis.
- Atrial septal defect.
- Carotid artery disease.
- Chronic venous (vein) disease.
- Coronary artery disease.
- Coronary artery fistula (unusual connection to another blood vessel or part of your heart).
- Heart attack.
- Heart valve disease.
- Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
- Peripheral artery disease.
- Thromboembolic disease (blood clots).
- Ventricular septal defect.
Interventional Cardiologists in West Orange, NJ
Interventional cardiologists play an indispensable role in diagnosing and treating cardiovascular diseases. They use minimally invasive techniques to help patients manage their heart health and lead fulfilling lives.
If you are looking for a highly trained and compassionate interventional cardiologist, visit us here at Hudson MD Group, where our team of exceptionally skilled interventional cardiologists is committed to offering diagnosis and treatment of heart diseases.
If you would like to know more about our interventional cardiologists, call us today at (973) 705-4914 or use our convenient online form to send us a message that you are on your way. We look forward to serving you!