In the field of heart pathology, there is a concept that is not always clear, at media level or between patients or even Healthcare professionals from other fields: the difference between a Cardiologist and a Heart Surgeon.
This difference can lead to misunderstandings and it essential when analysing and understandings many aspects of this pathology.
What is a cardiologist?
Regarding the Official Program of the specialty of Cardiology, published in the BOE on May 8, 2007 and particularly under paragraph 3 (“Definition of the specialty and its competencies”) “the cardiologist is the health professional with specific training to attend to patients who suffer cardiovascular diseases. On its competencies, the medical action and those resulting from its special technical training in the different diagnosis and therapeutic proceedings of cardiology are included.
What is a heart surgeon?
Heart Surgery “is a medicine specialty which is responsible for cardiovascular system disorders and diseases that need surgical therapy.
Its activity is related to all diagnosis or therapeutic processes with such system, about organization and management of health or management systems needed to perform this activity, about teaching systems organizations and management related to this specialty, about the accreditation of professionals specialties, and about the professional societies or participation groups in administrative and/or political healthcare institutions at national or local level”.
(Source: Revista de Cirugía Cardiovascular, Vol. 19, n. 1 – pages. 15-38, Jan – Mar 2012)
Both specialties have many points in common, as the type of patients treated and even certain techniques, depending on the hospital.
In the field of transcatheter valve, however, it is good to point out that those are complementary specialties but different when it comes to the therapeutic approach, because, as we will see on the next articles, certain routes and the management of many complications that can be arising during the proceedings, they are just affordable for Heart Surgeons.
Which specialist doctor should be responsible for implanting a transcatheter valve or TAVI?”