Whether you’re a professional athlete, a first responder or a weekend warrior, the sports cardiology program at Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute can keep your heart healthy, so you can stay on the job and enjoy the activities you love.

The sports cardiology team helps make sure you can perform your best while staying safe and healthy. We bring together experts from cardiology and sports medicine to diagnose and treat any known or unknown heart conditions. With the resources of Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute and Baptist Health South Florida, our program has access to the latest diagnostic tools and heart treatments, as well as robust support services to provide you with one-stop, comprehensive care.

What is sports cardiology?

Sports cardiology focuses on caring for athletes and active individuals who may have heart conditions. We also treat tactical or occupational athletes, such as law enforcement officers.

Our team, made up of experts in cardiology and sports medicine, also understands heat illness, the benefits of proper nutrition and the effects that different pre-existing conditions and medications have on athletic performance.

The goal of sports cardiology is to diagnose any potential health problems and develop a treatment plan that keeps you safe while maintaining an active lifestyle.

Who benefits from sports cardiology?

We treat all types of athletes and active individuals. You may benefit from sports cardiology if you:

  • Have a personal or family history of heart disease and want to safely participate in sports and strenuous activities.
  • Have heart symptoms — such as chest pain, fainting or heart palpitations — that affect your ability to be active or play sports.
  • Need a recovery plan for safely returning to work, activities or sports after heart surgery or a heart attack.

What does the Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute sports cardiology program include?

The sports cardiology program includes experts from across Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute. Cardiologists, physical therapists, imaging technologists and nutritionists will collaborate on your treatment to make sure you receive complete care.

Each new patient starts with a physical exam and consultation. During this exam, we’ll discuss any symptoms you have and the details of your active lifestyle. We’ll also go over your personal and family history of heart disease.

After the exam, we’ll conduct diagnostic heart testing to help us pinpoint your diagnosis. Tests can include:

  • Cardiopulmonary stress testing
  • Electrocardiograms (ECG)
  • Blood tests
  • Electrophysiology studies
  • Echocardiogram
  • Cardiac MRI
  • CT coronary angiography

Once we determine a diagnosis, our team will work together to develop a treatment plan that’s personalized to your needs and athletic goals.

Treatments may include:

  • Cardiac rehabilitation
  • Physical therapy
  • Medicines, such as ACE inhibitors, statins or blood thinners
  • Lifestyle changes, such as stress management and diet changes

The sports cardiology program also provides:

  • Sports performance counseling to help you safely improve your athletic performance
  • Sports nutrition counseling
  • Pre-participation exams for college and professional athletes, as well as first responders
  • Clearance exams for returning to sports after surgery or a heart attack
  • Community-based CPR training
Our Approach

Our Approach

When you come to Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute for sports cardiology, you can expect:

  • Comprehensive care that includes expertise from across Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute and Baptist Health.
  • A treatment plan that’s tailored to fit your needs, abilities and athletic goals.
  • The latest technology for diagnosing and treating heart conditions.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Our program also provides care for individuals who may have physically demanding jobs, such as firefighters, EMTs, police officers and members of SWAT teams. We understand that heart health and demanding physical activity are critical to first responders’ job performance. We work with these individuals to screen for hidden heart conditions and higher risks of heart attack and sudden cardiac arrest. Then, we develop treatment plans that keep them safe.

  • If we find that you may benefit from cardiac surgery or another heart procedure, we will refer you to one of our experts, including a cardiac surgeon, interventional cardiologist or interventional radiologist at Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute. Many cardiac procedures can be done with minimally invasive techniques, which helps improve recovery time.

Meet the team

Our team, led by Eli Friedman, M.D., Medical Director of Sports Cardiology, includes expert cardiologists, physical therapists, counselors and nutritionists who all specialize in sports cardiology.