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SCREENING FOR HEART DISEASE

GLOSSARY

WOMEN & HEART DISEASE

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Heart Disorders Glossary

A    B-D    E-L    M-R    S-Z    

Bacterial Endocarditis: An infection of the heart muscle, one or more heart valves, or lining of a heart chamber.

Blood Pressure: Measurement of the force of blood in the arteries as the heart contracts. Blood pressure can tell how well the heart is pumping and the condition of the blood vessels.

Bradycardia: Heart rate averaging less than 60 beats per minute.

Cardiac Output: The amount of blood pumped by the heart per minute.

Cardiomyopathy: This is the general term for diseases that create a weakening of the heart muscle or create a change in the heart structure. There are several forms of cardiomyopathy. This disorder can be caused by coronary artery disease, genetic disorders, infection, alcohol abuse, high blood pressure, and some immune disorders.

Cardiopulmonary Bypass: A machine that can perform the function of the heart and lung. Also known as a heart-lung machine.

Catheter: A small tube used used to access the arterial or venous system in order to correct a blockage, perform diagnostic or interventional procedures in the vascular or electrical system of the heart. Catheters can also be used to measure blood pressure in the heart chambers or lungs circulation.

Cholesterol: Fatty substance circulating in the blood stream which comes from dietary intake and is produced in the liver. Cholesterol is essential for the production of certain hormones and many body functions. Too much cholesterol in the blood can cause plaque to form in the arteries.

Claudication: Pain, usually in the calf or thigh muscles of the leg, caused by a lack of arterial blood supply. Claudication can develop in patients with atherosclerosis.

Coronary: Relating to the heart or to the coronary arteries that supply blood directly to the heart.

Defibrillator: Medical device used to apply an internal or external electric shock to the heart in order to restore normal rhythm.

Diastole: The period where the heart relaxes after a contraction.

Dilatation: The condition of being dilated or enlarged by an internal or external force.

Dyspnea: Difficulty breathing.