What Sets Vascular and Cardiovascular Surgeons Apart?
A vascular surgeon and cardiovascular surgeon are both doctors who treat patients with heart and blood vessel diseases. Even though these two specializations may appear to be identical, there are some significant distinctions between them that you should be aware of when choosing your doctor.
Cardiovascular surgeons focus on the heart and blood vessels:
They treat a variety of conditions and diseases, including heart attacks, heart valve defects, heart rhythm problems, congenital abnormalities and vascular diseases. Cardiovascular surgeons also perform non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures to repair or replace damaged parts of the heart, such as coronary bypasses (performed in both open-heart surgeries and through small incisions).
Cardiovascular surgeons are trained in all phases of treatment for cardiac disease, from diagnosis to postoperative care. Because these physicians treat patients with serious illnesses requiring specialized skills and knowledge, they must have completed an intensive five-year residency program following medical school.
In addition to general surgical training and expertise in treating complex medical problems within the chest cavity itself (such as tumors), cardiovascular surgeons must receive additional training specifically dedicated to diagnosing conditions affecting (or originating from) the circulatory system, namely arteries/veins leading into or away from your heart.
This includes preventing strokes by repairing blocked arteries before they cause damage beyond repair, restoring lost function due to where nerves were damaged due to injury caused by trauma sustained during accidents involving automobiles, and repairing arteries damaged by atherosclerosis caused by high cholesterol levels resulting from diet choices made over the years!
Cardiovascular surgeons focus on other types of blood vessels, including veins and arteries:
These vessels carry blood to and from the heart. Veins carry blood toward the heart, while arteries carry blood away. Vessels can become blocked or damaged, leading to problems such as pain in an arm or leg.
Cardiovascular surgeons treat these conditions by inserting stents into clogged arteries, for example, or by harvesting veins from another part of your body (a process called vein harvesting) so that they can be used to patch up damaged ones in your legs or arms
Together, cardiovascular and vascular doctors treat a variety of conditions and diseases:
Both types of doctors specialize in treating heart disease, blood vessel disease, and conditions related to atherosclerosis. Cardiovascular surgeons also treat aortic aneurysms (swelling of the aorta), which can lead to stroke or death if not treated.
They also treat peripheral artery disease—another condition that affects circulation—as well as carotid artery stenosis (narrowing of the carotid artery) and venous insufficiency (obstruction in the veins).
Cardiovascular surgeons have more training in cardiac surgery than cardiovascular surgeons do; however, vascular surgeons may perform catheterization procedures such as angiograms or fistulagrams on patients with the peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAD).
Cardiovascular and vascular surgeons are highly trained doctors who specialize in treating patients with heart and blood vessel disorders. While their roles may overlap, Despite their apparent similarities, these two specializations have some significant distinctions that you should be aware of when selecting your doctor.