Who is it for?
If you’re at significant risk of heart disease; have had a heart attack, stroke, or other cardiovascular event; or have undergone procedures such as angioplasty and stenting or coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG), your doctor will prescribe medications as part of your treatment plan for primary and secondary prevention:
- Primary prevention is when medications are prescribed to prevent heart disease. An example of this would be starting a cholesterol medicine before plaque begins to build up in the blood vessels.
- Secondary prevention is when medicines are prescribed to limit the progress of heart disease or reducing its symptoms. For example, doctors may prescribe a beta blocker drug for a patient who has had a heart attack to control blood pressure, relieve chest pain (angina), and reduce rhythm disturbances.
If you or your primary care doctor has any questions about the medications that have been prescribed for you, be sure to talk to your prescribing cardiologist before making any changes. Improving your cardiovascular health depends on carefully taking prescribed medication and maintaining ongoing contact with your cardiologist.
Remember, caring for your cardiovascular health doesn’t end when you leave the cardiologist’s office or hospital—it’s only the beginning.