General Cardiology Services and Treatment at Denver Heart
Patients at Denver Heart receive high-quality care from board-certified cardiologists and cardiac specialists, who are trained to treat a wide number of heart-related conditions and health problems.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every one in four deaths in the U.S. every year are the result of heart disease. The CDC also reports that over 700,000 people in the U.S. have a heart attack every year.
Coronary heart disease — the most common type of heart disease — kills more than 370,000 Americans annually.
Denver Heart is committed to reducing these numbers, preventing heart disease and doing everything we can to help patients with a heart condition live as much of a healthy and active lifestyle as possible.
Preventing Heart Disease
At Denver Heart, treating heart disease starts at prevention. For those who have a family history of heart disease or have been referred by their primary doctor to a cardiologist, Denver Heart provides an array of preventative services for heart patients.
As part of our ongoing commitment to accurate diagnosis and early intervention, we may use one or more of the following diagnostic tools:
- New patient consultation — Cardiac specialists at Denver Heart work one-on-one with each patient to design an individualized treatment plan. Our doctors help patients identify and reduce their risk factors for heart disease, make necessary diet and lifestyle changes and provide multiple treatment options for each patient.
- Exercise stress testing — An exercise stress test helps both patients and doctors know how well your heart handles work (stress). An exercise stress test is often used to diagnose coronary artery disease, determine a safe level of exercise for patients, predict one’s potential risk of heart attack or dangerous heart-related condition, and monitor the progress of patients with coronary artery disease.
- Echocardiography — Also known as a diagnostic cardiac ultrasound, an echocardiogram uses sound waves to take pictures of the heart’s chambers, valves, walls and blood vessels. An echo test helps doctors see how well the heart functions, the heart’s pumping strength and if there are any problems or abnormalities occurring inside the heart.
- Event & Holter Monitoring: These portable devices record the same information as an echocardiogram, but can be taken with you, while you go about your normal life. An event monitor is triggered by the user to record an event and can be used for a month or more. A Holter monitor records continually for usually 24-48 hours. This data can help your physician see how your heart beats during normal life activities.
- Implantable Loop Recorder: An implantable loop recorder (ILR) is a small device about the size of a USB stick. It is implanted under the skin during a minor procedure and is used to record your heart rhythm for up to three years. This information is extremely valuable to our providers in determining the right diagnosis and treatment.
Treatment for Coronary Artery Disease
Coronary artery disease refers to the buildup of plaque in the arteries of the heart that could potentially result in a heart attack. Coronary heart disease is actually caused by coronary artery disease, but doctors often use these terms interchangeably.
In general, the risk factors for coronary artery disease include high LDL cholesterol, low HDL cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, family history and possibly obesity. Men older than age 45 and women who are postmenopausal might also be at an increased risk of coronary artery disease.
Coronary artery disease is preventable. Patients who eat or adopt a healthy diet, control their weight and get the right amount of exercise can reduce their risk of coronary heart disease. For patients diagnosed with coronary artery disease, therapies include medications that help the heart not work so hard, taking aspirin to prevent blood clots and improve blood flow, and lipid management, which helps control the cholesterol that can block arteries.
If a patient has coronary artery disease in the more advanced stages, other treatment procedures include stenting (which helps keep a blocked passageway open) or bypass surgery (in which damaged arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle are replaced).
Heart Disease in Women — Prevention, Intervention and Treatment
According to the American Heart Association, every minute one woman in the U.S. dies from heart disease, stroke or another form or cardiovascular disease. More than one in three women are living with cardiovascular disease, including 34 percent of white women and nearly half of all African-American women.
Many people wrongly think that men are more impacted by heart disease than women. Because of this, it’s crucial for women to know the risk factors of heart disease, take steps to prevent or reduce the likelihood of heart attack or stroke, and consult with a cardiac specialist in the early stages of diagnosis.
Quick facts about cardiovascular disease in women:
- Compared to men, symptoms of heart disease can be different in women
- Younger women can be impacted by heart disease
- Women with a family history of heart disease are often at higher risk
- With the right interventions and treatments, women can reduce their risk of heart disease
At Denver Heart, our cardiologists are skilled in identifying the risk factors of heart disease in our female patients, recommending targeted treatment options for women with cardiovascular disease, and providing specialized care for women with heart conditions.
Treatment for Atrial Fibrillation (AFib)
Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is an irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) that increases your risk of stroke. AFib can limit the amount of blood that reaches the lower chambers of the heart and the body. During AFib, blood can also pool in the atria (the upper chamber). Learn more about AFib
Athletes and Heart Disease
As many athletes lead a healthy lifestyle, there is often an assumption that athletes and physically active people are not at risk for heart disease. However, athletes can be impacted by heart disease or suffer from heart-related health conditions at any point in their life. Learn more about how we treat athletes and heart disease.
Treating Heart Failure
Heart failure doesn't mean that your heart has stopped working all together. Instead, this term (and commonly used term congestive heart failure) refers to a chronic condition in which the heart is not pumping enough blood to meet your body's demands. As a result, you feel fatigued, short of breath and have difficulty walking or climbing stairs. Your heart failure may be managed with medications, or you may have an additional underlying condition that can be treated to alleviate the heart failure. Surgical or medical device treatments might include: heart valve repair or replacement, coronary bypass, implantable cardioverter-defibrillators, ventricular assist devices (VADs) and cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT), or biventricular pacing. Talk to your cardiologist about your options.
Specialized Cardiac Care in Denver
Denver Heart is a leader in providing expert-level care to heart patients in Denver and throughout Colorado. Our cardiac specialists not only treat and diagnose heart disease, but also help patients with heart conditions improve their quality of life.