By Sneha Korlakunta

Job Description

A cardiologist is a physician who specializes in diagnosing, treating and preventing diseases of the cardiovascular system, which includes the heart and the blood vessels, through a combination of physical examination, symptom review, and medical testing. Several medical conditions a cardiologist detects are coronary heart disease, heart failure, and arrhythmia. Their treatments range from prescribed medications to invasive surgery.

At that point, cardiology divides into two subcategories: noninvasive and interventional. The former only diagnoses ailments, while the latter performs invasive examinations and procedures to treat the cardiac disease.

Range of Beginning Salary: $180,000 to $250,000
Job Outlook 2020-2021: 18% expected growth

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Certifications and Degrees for a Board-Certified Cardiologist

  • Bachelor's degree in a science related field (4 yrs)
  • Medical School (4 yrs)
  • United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE)
  • Board Certification in Internal Medicine (3 yrs)
  • Complete Cardiology Fellowship (3 yrs)
  • Cardiovascular Disease Certification Examination (CDCE)
  • State Licensure

[To become an Interventional Cardiologist]

  • Additional Fellowship Training (1-2 yrs)

Interests, Skills, and Aptitudes

  • to be very knowledgeable about the cardiovascular system
  • to be able to perform and interpret specialised tests and procedures
  • to have a high level of responsibility and the confidence to make decisions in emergencies
  • excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • the confidence and sound knowledge to correctly diagnose and consult with patients
  • compassion, self-motivation and the ability to work under pressure for long hours
  • to be willing to undertake ongoing research

Professional Organizations

Career Goals

Short-term: Become an interventional cardiologist in a hospital

Mid-range: Advance to the lead IC in a hospital

Long-term: Create and maintain my own independent practice

Work atmosphere and workload

Working conditions are usually pleasant with the work environment being indoors in well-light exam rooms and hospitals. Hours of work frequently exceed 60 hours a week in the busier practices. Many cardiologists spend a significant amount of time on call. This typically can result in being awakened at all hours of the night and/or being asked to come in at irregular times to evaluate a patient.