Paediatric cardiology- how its different form general cardiology

Paediatric cardiology- how its different form general cardiology
Today, in India, the rate of heart problems among children under 18 years of age, are not very common but are steeply rising. This is alarming and needs dedicated, world-class care. These problems could be due to multiple reasons such as genetics, birth defects, unhealthy lifestyle, improper growth, smoking and alcohol consumption during pregnancy by the mother or more. Mostly, heart problems in children develop while they are in the uterus and in other cases could also be caused by certain illness during childhood. Cardiac ailments in children can take several forms and need expert medical attention – medications, surgery, post-follow-ups, etc. Paediatric cardiology is the field which is dedicated to provide holistic treatment for children of all ages; it encompasses comprehensive care for patients - from pregnancy, through infancy, childhood, teenage years and later - that have congenital or acquired heart problem. Children are very different from adults and one such area of vast difference is the cardiac space. The cardiac problems of children vary immensely than those of normal adults; hence, children their care needs to be more specialized and attentive. Many children suffering from heart problems do not show any symptoms and may appear healthy, hence, oftentimes such problems also tend to get ignored until later when they become extremely critical. Paediatric cardiology is a branch of general cardiology that exclusively focuses on children, infants and unborn children with various cardiac problems, and involves diagnosis, prevention and treatment of cardiac defects and problems in them. One should visit a paediatric cardiologist if the child tends to show any of the below symptoms such as: Blue lips and skinDifficulty in feeding (sweating, breathlessness, etc.)Shortness of breathPalpitationsPoor growthPale skinFatigueWeak immunityHeart murmurFaintingLack of physical activenessChest pain The symptoms indicate that the heart is not functioning properly and needs medical attention. That said, Paediatric cardiologists are doctors who have expertise in diagnosing and treating children with heart conditions. These paediatric cardiologists’ work closely with cardiothoracic surgeons, paediatricians focussed on other specialities, and expert nurses and staff to provide highly quality, patient-centric and family-oriented care for children. A paediatric cardiologist can treat several conditions for patients such as: Infancy cardiovascular collapseCardiac failureNewborn cyanosisHeart murmursChest pain, palpitationsFatigue and  faintingCongenital heart problemCardiovascular defectsCardiac abnormalitiesHeart transplantAortic valve stenosisArterial trunkAtrial septal defect (ASD) Paediatric cardiology entails learning general paediatrics to ensure all-round care of the growing and developing individual. It involves treatment of congenital heart defects, irregular heart beat and rhythm, as well as circulatory function problems. Additionally, Paediatric cardiology involves extensive training and skill in handling and treating children, in the best possible manner. Paediatric cardiology also involves performing several tests to detect heart problems. These tests are simple, non-invasive, and quick including chest X-ray, ECG, ultrasound scan, etc. The treatment of a child suffering from a heart ailment depends on the type of heart problem and the severity of the case. Most heart defects tend to resolve over time with specialized care offered by paediatric cardiology; the other heart problems are treated by medications...
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Know cardiology diagnostic tests and procedures

Know cardiology diagnostic tests and procedures
A heart may be just the size of a fist or two but definitely is the most important organ of the human body. It is the foundation of survival because it pumps blood to all other organs in the body. Hence, it is critical to ensure that our health is healthy and strong. Proper care, healthy diet, disciplined lifestyle are important determinants to maintain good heart health. It is also vital to get cardiology diagnostic tests done to assess the heart condition. Also, for those suffering from a heart problem or are witnessing symptoms that could potentially indicate one, it is always advisable to know cardiology diagnostic tests and cardiology diagnostic procedures that could help, such as: Electrocardiogram (ECG): An ECG is a fairly common cardiology diagnostic procedure which helps to record electrical signals from the heart to detect irregularities in the rhythm and structure of the heart. This cardiology diagnostic test records the heart’s rhythm on a moving strip of paper or as a line on a monitor. It is one of the main techniques to detect arrhythmia – any variation in the normal rhythm of the heartbeat. An ECG can also be used to know cholesterol clogging heart’s blood supply, any previous heart attack, enlargement of the heart, etc. It is a safe, painless, and quick test. Holter Monitoring: A cardiology diagnostic test where your heartbeat is monitored 24 hours to record heart’s activity, its rhythm, and heart rate. A holter monitor is a small, portable device, powered by a battery and is a size of small camera with wires electrodes that attach to the skin. The doctor might ask you wear this device to get more readings that a normal, routine ECG. The length of monitoring could depend per case; it can even stretch from 24 hours to 48 or 72 hours depending on need. This is also a very effective method to record arrhythmia. The patient might be asked to list all symptoms experienced while wearing the monitor. Echocardiogram: Echocardiogram or more popularly known as an Echo is a very important cardiology diagnostic test that outlines the heart’s movement over a period of time. An Echo provides graphic pictures of the heart’s valves, chambers            to help the doctor evaluate the functioning of the heart specifically its pumping action. During an echo, a hand-held wand is placed on your chest that sends high-frequency sound waves that provide clear picture of the heart – electrodes detect heart rhythm while ultrasound technology provides picture of blood flowing through the heart. This is a completely non-invasive cardiology diagnostic test and is often suggested by doctors to eliminate any heart problem symptoms. Stress Test: This is a modification of the regular cardiology diagnostic tests and records the heart rate and rhythm by raising your normal heart rate with exercise or medicine.The doctor might ask you to run on the treadmill, cycle, take a walk or run, etc. to know the response of the heart beat to the physical activity and how...
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Hypertensive and high blood pressure heart disease

Hypertensive and high blood pressure heart disease
Blood pressure of a body is determined by the blood pumped by the heart and the resistance to blood flow in the arteries. High blood pressure is an alarming condition and also the prime cause of death due to hypertensive heart diseases. High blood pressure or high BP raises the heat of the body to extreme levels which when functioning under extreme pressure leads to acute heart disorders such as heart failure, thickening of the heart muscle, coronary heart disease, and several other serious conditions. Hypertensive heart diseases are very critical and could also lead to death. High blood pressure causes excessive strain on the blood causing the coronary arteries to become narrowed over time due to the build-up of fat, cholesterol and other substances. This build-up of plaque is also called atherosclerosis. Due to build-up of plaque over time, the arteries serving the heart harden, and blood clots tend to block the proper flow of blood through the heart leading to deprivation of oxygen and essential nutrients in the heart creating possible conditions for a heart attack. Today, hypertensive heart diseases are one of the major causes of heart attacks and also have a very high record of heart attacks leading to death. Hence, it is very important to get a deeper knowledge of hypertensive heart diseases, its types, risk factors, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment. Types of hypertensive heart diseases The various kind of hypertensive heart diseases associated with high BP includes: Narrowed arteries: High blood pressure causes the arteries to become blocked due to the formation of blood clots caused by excess build-up plaque over time. These blocked blood vessels lead to a slow or stoppage of blood flow in the heart causing critical damage. The restricted blood flow of the heart interferes in its proper functioning and affects other organs simultaneously, leading to a heart attack in many cases. Thickened and enlarged heart:  Also known as ventricular hypertrophy (LVH), this condition occurs when due to excessive pressure the heart faces difficulty in pumping blood leading to improper functioning of the heart. The heart has to work more to pump blood and hence, becomes more stressed. This leads to thickening and enlargement of the heart, while at the same time compresses the coronary arteries putting the person at extreme risk of heart failure, arrhythmia, ischemic heart disease, heart attack, sudden cardiac arrest, stroke or sudden death. That said, today hypertensive heart diseases cause a large number of deaths in the country and need more awareness and vigilance. High blood pressure also causes increased risk to your brain and can lead to problems such as stroke, dementia, cognitive impairment, etc. It is also very harmful for the kidneys, eyes, and decreases your sexual ability. High blood pressure combined with factors listed below can increases the risk of hypertensive heart disease. Overweight or obesityLack of physical activitySmokingExcessive alcoholUnhealthy eating habitsHigh cholesterolExcessive salt in the dietLack of potassiumStress Also, hypertensive heart diseases are likely to occur if it runs in the...
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