Facilities > Cardiology

Cardiology is the care of adults and children with various forms of heart and blood vessel problems. Patients who are critically ill and very sick, are admitted to the Coronary Care Unit. This makes it swift and easy for patients with heart problems to get immediate medical care.

  • Ischemic heart disease where the blood supply to the heart is poor. Patients present symptoms of angina, shortness of breath, swollen ankles and such.
  • Heart failure – when the heart does not work properly. People may get tired easily experience shortness of breath, swollen ankles etc
  • Valvular heart disease – the valves in the heart have an opening that is either too small or the valves leak.
  • Hypertension – high blood pressure (Increased BP).
  • Cardiac rhythm abnormalities – the heart beats too fast or too slow or irregularly.
  • Congenital heart problems – when someone is born with heart problems.
  • Vascular problems – the blood vessels in the body can become narrow or blocked. This often causes pain. Cardiology can open some of these blocks and so make the blood supply better.

What are the tests performed in Cardiology?

Non-invasive investigations (tests that do not need needles or operations) include:

  • n electrocardiogram (ECG) records the electrical patterns of the heart.
  • Echocardiography (Echo), an ultrasound scan of the heart.
  • Stress testing, TMT.
  • Holter test. This records the ECG while the person is walking around for one day i.e., 24hrs.
  • Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring - records the BP while the person is walking around for one day.
  • Head Up Tilt Test (HUTT) – to evaluate causes of fainting

Invasive Cardiology

There are two modern cardiac catheterisation laboratories. In the cardiac catheterisation laboratories, (often just called the cath labs) they do invasive tests and invasive procedures are conducted.

Invasive tests involve putting needles, wires or tubes into the body.

  • Cardiac catheterisation - to study the heart, a tiny tube is inserted into the heart. Then the doctor injects a “dye” that shows the inside of the heart.
  • Coronary angiogram – injecting a “dye” to show the arteries of the heart.
  • Electrophysiological procedures – measuring and treating abnormal electrical activity in the heart.

Invasive Procedures

  • Coronary angioplasty. This is a treatment where a special contrast is put into the heart to show the arteries on an Xray. The doctor widens any narrow arteries. This enlarges narrowed areas or removes blocks. The blood can then flow smoother and faster.
  • Peripheral vessel angioplasty – looking at the arteries far away from the heart (peripheral). Then opening up any narrowed or blocked arteries (angioplasty).
  • Balloon valvuloplasty – opening up narrowed heart valves – mitral, aortic, pulmonary and tricuspid valves.
  • Alcohol septal ablation.
  • Defect closures – abnormal holes in the heart can be closed. This is offered for cases of Atrial Septal Defect (ASD); Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD) and a Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA).
  • Radiofrequency ablation – using a special radio machine to remove abnormal areas, that produce abnormal rhythm of the heart.
  • Pacemaker implantation - putting in an electrical machine to help the heart beat at the right speed. Temporary ones are inserted just for a short time and are then removed and replaced with permanent ones. These stay in the patient and the patient goes home with it.
  • Intra-aortic balloon pump – used to treat some heart problems.

Cardiology Consultants: