Our cardiology specialists offer advanced treatment and care for conditions affecting your heart and blood vessels, including heart disease, stroke, heart rhythm disorders and high blood pressure.
Cardiology health care
We perform noninvasive and minimally invasive tests and procedures that check, support and improve your heart health. We’ll work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan and treat you with the most effective medications.
Health care services
Consultation with heart specialists
- General cardiology care
- Heart failure treatment - evaluation and management of heart dysfunction
- Interventional cardiology - procedures to look for and correct blocked arteries
- Structural cardiology - implanted devices to correct heart valve issues
- Electrophysiology - diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting heart rhythm
- Implantable devices - pacemakers or implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICD) to correct your heartbeat
Heart testing and procedures
- Electrocardiogram (ECG)/heart monitors - measures electrical activity of the heart to detect problems
- Stress testing - heart tests to evaluate how the heart works during physical activity
- Echocardiography - imaging test that uses ultrasound to monitor the heart function, valves and some defects
- Cardiac CT scans/cardiac MRI - non-invasive procedures that provide detailed information on the type and severity of heart disease to help your doctor decide the best way to treat heart problems
- Coronary angiography/heart catheters - procedures to look for and correct blocked arteries
- Electrophysiology studies/ablation - tests using catheters and specialized electrodes placed in the heart that help doctors understand and treat abnormal rhythms/arrhythmias
- Transcatheter heart valve repair/replacement (TAVR, MitraClip) - minimally invasive procedure where a new valve is inserted without removing the old, damaged valve
- Coronary angioplasty/stenting - procedure used to open or widen clogged heart arteries
- Coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG) - redirects blood around a section of a blocked or partially blocked artery in your heart
- Heart valve repair/replacement
Cardiac rehab is a medically supervised program to help people who have cardiovascular disease return to an active life, and to reduce the risk of further heart problems.
Prevention and screening
Making changes that make your arteries healthier will help lower your risk for both heart attack and stroke. If you have heart disease, you may need to work on a few aspects of your lifestyle. But remember that the things that are good for your arteries, heart and brain are also good for the rest of your body.
- Screening recommendations for men
- Screening recommendations for women
- National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Be involved in your health care. Work with your health care team, whether through virtual care or an in-person appointment, to learn more about some of the ways you can take an active role in disease prevention.
Quit smoking or using smokeless tobacco.
Get 24/7 support with a Smokefree app for your smartphone. These free apps offer help just for you based on your smoking patterns, moods, motivation to quit, and quitting goals.
You have your best chance at quitting tobacco when you get behavioral counseling and use cessation medication. Learn more about how to quit.
Maintain a healthy weight.
Ask your provider for help with a plan to lose weight. The VA MOVE! Weight Management Program is designed to help Veterans with weight loss.
Exercise each day.
"Physical activity" includes any activity that raises your heart rate, such as brisk walking, working in the house or yard or playing sports. Do activity for 10 minutes or more at a time. Aim for at least 2 hours and 30 minutes of activity each week.
Reduce salt (sodium) in your diet.
Read food labels. Choose and prepare foods that are low in sodium or are sodium-free. Ask to see a registered dietitian if you need help with a plan.
If you drink alcohol, limit your intake to one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men. Learn more about VA treatment programs if you need assistance with reducing your use of alcohol.
Education: cardiovascular disease
What is cardiovascular disease?
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a general term for several conditions affecting the blood vessels in and around the heart. The most common forms of cardiovascular disease include coronary artery disease (CAD) and hypertension (high blood pressure). In addition to a direct impact on the heart muscle, CVD can also contribute to stroke, which occurs when something blocks blood supply to part of the brain, or when a blood vessel in the brain bursts.
There are many different types of heart disease. Some you may be born with, called congenital heart disease. Other types develop during your lifetime. Vascular diseases are conditions which affect your vascular system. They are common and can be serious.
Coronary heart disease (CHD)
The most common type of heart disease, is when plaque builds up in the arteries leading to the heart. CHD is also called coronary artery disease (CAD). When arteries narrow, the heart cannot get enough blood and oxygen. A blocked artery can cause a heart attack. Over time, CHD can weaken the heart muscle and cause heart failure or arrhythmias.
Occurs when the heart muscle becomes stiff or weak. It cannot pump out enough oxygen-rich blood, which causes symptoms throughout the body. The condition may affect only the right side or only the left side of the heart. More often, both sides of the heart are involved. High blood pressure and CAD are common causes of heart failure.
Problems with heart rate (pulse) or heart rhythm. This happens when the heart's electrical system doesn't work properly. The heart may beat too fast, too slow, or unevenly. Certain heart problems, such as heart attack or heart failure can cause problems with the heart's electrical system. Some people are born with an arrhythmia.
Heart valve diseases
Occur when one of the four valves in the heart does not work properly. Blood can leak through the valve in the wrong direction (called regurgitation), or a valve may not open far enough and block blood flow (called stenosis). An unusual heartbeat, called a heart murmur, is the most common symptom. Certain heart problems, such as heart attack, heart disease, or infection, can cause heart valve diseases. Some people are born with heart valve problems.
Peripheral artery disease
Occurs when the arteries to your legs and feet become narrow due to a buildup of plaque. Narrow arteries reduce or block blood flow. When blood and oxygen can't get to the legs, it can injure nerves and tissue.
High blood pressure (hypertension)
A cardiovascular disease that can lead to other problems, such as heart attack, heart failure, and stroke.
Caused by a lack of blood flow to the brain. This can happen because of a blood clot traveling to the blood vessels in the brain, or bleeding in the brain. Stoke has many of the same risk factors as heart disease.
Congenital heart disease
A problem with the heart's structure and function that is present at birth. Congenital heart disease can describe a number of different problems affecting the heart. It is the most common type of birth defect.
From National Library of Medicine - Understanding cardiovascular disease