Who treats CAD?
Don’t let CAD hold you back. Make sure you’re talking to the right doctor at every point in journey toward better health to make sure you’re on the right path.
Internal medicine/general practitioner
If you think you have symptoms of heart disease, you should talk to your internal medicine doctor or general practitioner first. They will go over your symptoms and will talk with a general cardiologist after landing on a preliminary diagnosis. They may refer you to a more specialized cardiologist for treatment or for tests.
Your general practitioner or internal medicine doctor may refer you to a cardiologist. A cardiologist is a doctor that specializes in heart diseases. You will have some tests. The cardiologist will determine whether or not you have coronary heart disease. They can work with an interventional cardiologist to find the best treatment for you. Your cardiologist may refer you to the interventional cardiologist or a cardiac surgeon for more testing if you have coronary artery disease and to form a treatment plan.
You will work closely with an interventional cardiologist when deciding what treatment choice is best for you. An interventional cardiologist is a heart doctor who specializes in minimally invasive percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) procedures, like stenting and angioplasty. They can refer you to a PCI specialist for an assessment.
It is important that you talk with your doctor about which treatment is the right one for you and that you understand all of the risks and benefits.
Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) specialist
A PCI specialist is a heart doctor who knows percutaneous coronary intervention treatment and procedures the best. They are highly trained in treating people with complex conditions. The PCI specialist decides which minimally invasive PCI procedure is right for you.