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Cardiovascular Disease

Testing for Cardiovascular Disease

There is no single test to diagnose problems with the heart or blood vessels. Therefore, a healthcare provider will use a number of tests to look for cardiovascular disease. The healthcare provider uses information such as the physical exam results, risk factors, family history, and symptoms to decide which test or tests to order.
 
Some of these tests include:
 
  • Blood tests
  • Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG)
  • Chest x-ray
  • Stress test
  • Echocardiogram
  • Nuclear scan
  • Ankle/brachial index
  • Ultrasound
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Angiography
  • Biopsy.
     
(Click Cardiovascular System Tests for more information.)
 

How Is It Treated?

Depending on the specific condition, treatment for cardiovascular disease may involve:
 
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Medication
  • Special procedures
  • Rehabilitation.
 
(Click Treatments for Cardiovascular Disease to learn about treatment options for specific conditions, such as varicose veins, spider veins, and Raynaud's phenomenon.)
 

Cardiovascular Health and Disease Prevention

When most people talk about preventing cardiovascular disease, they are usually talking about preventing coronary artery disease and stroke.
 
Preventing cardiovascular disease requires paying attention to good cardiovascular health and:
 
  • Understanding the cardiovascular system and diseases that can affect it
  • Learning your risk factors for preventable cardiovascular diseases
  • Learning the risk factors that apply to you
  • Doing something about the risks you can modify.
     
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Cardiovascular Diseases

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