Professor Gerry Carr-White is a Consultant Cardiologist and a member of the team of heart experts at The Cardiac Clinic. This specialist clinic, is made up of a team of consultant cardiac experts who have dedicated their lives to diagnosing, treating and monitoring heart conditions. The types of cardiac treatment offered by the clinic is comprehensive. It’s also a clinic where the team believe that flexibility for patients is of the utmost importance, that's  why at this clinic, you can either choose to have your first appointment virtually or in clinic, and if you choose to visit our clinic, we help find a time which suits you best.

I joined The Cardiac Clinic back in 2007 – so I’ve already spent well over a decade here treating patients. What drew me into medicine was knowing that I can positively impact another person’s quality of life.

Professor Gerry Carr-White

How can you tell if you have a heart problem?

This question is not always that easy to answer, as heart symptoms are not always obvious, at The Cardiac Clinic we see an incredibly wide spectrum of patients – from young patients who are concerned about inherited heart conditions and what it means for them, to those patients who are a bit older and have suspected heart failure – where the heart is unable to pump blood around the body properly and can become weakened or stiff. If your concerned about your heart, you can visit a GP in the first instance, or book directly to see a cardiologist if its a known heart condition, diagnosed or family related.

At the clinic, we also specialise in the preventative side of cardiology – picking up heart problems at the earliest possible stage and effectively treating them. In these instances, patients might come to us with symptoms such as feeling faint, and can receive treatment before their condition becomes serious. 

It's important that both men and women present any cardiac symptoms that they have as soon as possible. Many think that heart attacks are a ‘male heath issue’, however coronary heart disease – the main cause of heart attacks – is the biggest killer of women worldwide, so, it’s equally as important that both men and women see a doctor if they’re concerned. 

How has COVID-19 impacted heart health?

COVID-19 has had a huge impact on people’s cardiac health and this only looks to continue. A recent study by the British Heart Foundation found that around half of 1,216 patients who received a heart scan while in hospital due to COVID-19 showed abnormalities in their heart function, with around one in seven showing severe abnormalities which are likely to have a major effect on their survival and recovery.

I’ve seen many patients whose cardiac health has been affected in the short term, and I have also seen patients, who, months after a positive COVID-19 diagnosis, are experiencing cardiac complaints for the first time and may have a long term impact. ‘Long COVID-19', as it is now being coined, can even affect those who are physically fit – in the last few months in particular I’ve seen lots of otherwise physically fit patients who have come to me after experiencing heart palpitations or non-acute chest pains. 

People’s lifestyles during the various lockdowns that we have experienced will also have long-term impact. Some for the better as people have embraced health and fitness, whereas in some cases, people have become more sedentary, and their diet might have become unhealthier.

If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or Long COVID-19 and are concerned about your heart our cardiologists undertake a virtual initial consultation to understand your current health and symptoms. Our patient's safety is of the upmost importance and from this consultation we can establish what the next steps need to be taken specifically for your heart health.

What are the recent changes to diagnosis and treatment of cardiac complaints?

Diagnosing heart conditions

With regards to the diagnosis side of things, cardiac MRIs are now becoming standard procedure in looking at the heart muscle and whether there’s any scarring there. The technology behind cardiac CT scans are also amazing these days, you can get a very in-depth view of the arteries using this diagnostic method.

Treating heart conditions

When it comes to new treatment methods, in some cases, injections are now being used to treat patients with high cholesterol, either as a replacement or in addition to the statin medication patients take.

At the clinic we also offer percutaneous treatments for patients with valve diseases, instead of major heart surgery. These minimally invasive procedures repair or replace the diseased heart valve without removing the damaged one. 

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