Generally speaking, most people only consider seeing a healthcare professional when they don’t feel well. Many times, even when physical pain or sickness occurs, they still try to put off seeking medical care. However, physicians who specialize in heart health say certain symptoms should raise red flags in both men and women.

Anyone experiencing shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pains, changes in heart rate or rhythm or high blood pressure should see a healthcare professional, as these symptoms may indicate a heart condition. Dr. Rodney Handshoe, Dr. Hamid Nawaz, Dr. Raymon Nelson, Dr. Madhava Pally and Dr. Vibha Amblihalli, cardiologists at the Heart and Vascular Institute of Eastern Kentucky at Pikeville Medical Center (PMC), specialize in diagnosing and treating diseases of the cardiovascular system. These experienced physicians and their highly trained staff can perform a variety of tests including ECG or EKG, stress tests, echocardiogram and more to diagnose potential heart issues.

Upon the diagnosis of a heart disease or condition, a PMC cardiologist may refer the patient to a cardiac specialist, of which the Heart and Vascular Institute at PMC has twelve. For example, an interventional cardiologist may perform a heart catheterization procedure and place stents to correct blood flow, whereas an electrophysiologist may need to implant a device into the heart to combat a blood clot threat and reduce a patient’s risk of stroke.

PMC cardiologists also treat patients who have previously had a heart attack, heart failure or experienced other heart problems and diseases. Pikevile Medical Center has received prestigious accreditations and awards from many national organizations including the Society of Chest Pain Centers. After a detailed review and on-site survey, PMC was recently awarded a Level IV Accreditation as a Chest Pain Center with PCI (percutaneous coronary intervention.) This highly-acclaimed distinction made PMC one of the first five in the nation, and the first hospital in Kentucky to earn this accreditation.

In addition, the Heart and Vascular Institute of Eastern Kentucky at PMC has been consistently named one of the top 100 hospitals in the nation in patient safety for Heart Attack Treatment by CareChex. This ranking compares clinical quality, patient safety and performance of acute care hospitals providing this life-saving service.

To learn more about cardiology services offered at PMC, visit  To schedule an appointment, call 606-430-2201.