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Preventive Cardiology

Preventative cardiology refers to trying to catch cardiovascular disease before it occurs. This deals mostly with addressing risk factors. Some of these risk factors can be modified through lifestyle changes and medications. Other risk factors such as your family history or genetics cannot be changed, but knowing about them can allow problems to be discovered and treated before they cause harm.

What to Watch For


  • Obesity
  • Sedentary
  • Tobacco use
  • Alcohol use
  • Drug use

Medical conditions

  • Hypertension
  • Hyperlipidemia
  • Diabetes
  • Sleep apnea

Family history

  • Sudden cardiac death
  • Early cardiovascular disease (men under 55 years old, women under 65 years old)
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Bicuspid aortic valve

Diagnostic Testing in Preventive Cardiology

Physical exam

  • Body mass index
  • Blood pressure
  • Murmurs

Lab testing

  • Cholesterol panel
  • Genetic testing
  • Inflammatory markers such as CRP

Cardiovascular testing

Treatments in Preventive Cardiology

Modifiable Risk Factors

  • Hypertension – medications and lifestyle changes
  • Cholesterol – medications and lifestyle changes
  • Obesity – medications, lifestyle changes and surgery
  • Smoking cessation – medications and clinic evaluation
  • Treat sleep apnea – sleep clinic
  • Exercise – at least 150 minutes of exercise a week
  • Diabetes – Keep A1c under 7.0 and close to 6.0

Genetic Conditions

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

  • Possible EKG, echocardiogram, MRI, genetic testing in relatives
  • Possible medications and defibrillators

Bicuspid aortic valve

  • Possible echocardiogram, CT scan and genetic testing in relatives
  • Possible valve treatments and aorta treatments

Sudden cardiac death

  • Possible EKG, echocardiogram, MRI and genetic testing in relatives
  • Possible medications and defibrillators

Abdominal aortic aneurysm

  • Possible ultrasound or CT scan in relatives
  • Possible aneurysm repair