Absolute best way to study for Cardiology and crush your exam

Why did the cardiologist go to art school? To get better at drawing blood!

But we're in med school, not art school and if we want to crush our cardiology exam, we're going to need an elite study plan.

Here's what we need to do:

  1. Understand the basic key concepts, especially the anatomy and physiology using quality content and flashcards

  2. Learn where things are visually by doing image occlusion

  3. Master clinical case applications

  1. First, learning the basics

Anatomy of the Heart:

  • Understand the structure of the heart, including chambers, valves, and major blood vessels (arteries and veins) that supply blood to and from the heart.

  • Build familiarity with the coronary arteries and their significance in heart disease

I found this video from the Amoeba Sisters to be a lovely overview (8 minutes). Always got to practice active learning too, or else it's so easy to doze off, so here's my Anatomy of the Heart flashcards for the video.

Physiology of the Heart:

  • Learn how the heart functions, including the cardiac cycle (systole and diastole), heart sounds, and the electrical conduction system that regulates heartbeats.

  • Understanding the concepts of cardiac output, stroke volume, and heart rate is crucial.

Shout out to Armando for the banger explanation here and here's my flashcards on the video

Electrocardiogram (ECG) Basics:

  • The ECG is a fundamental tool in cardiology for diagnosing arrhythmias, myocardial infarction, and other cardiac conditions.

  • Then we need to learn to interpret basic ECG findings, such as P waves, QRS complexes, and T waves, along with understanding heart rhythms.

Here is a great video from the legendary Ninja Nerd (1 hour), along with my accompanying ECG Basics flashcards on it

Blood Pressure and Circulation:

  • Systemic and pulmonary circulation

  • The mechanisms that regulate blood pressure and the impact of hypertension on the cardiovascular system

This video gives a concise (and mildly entertaining) overview (4 minutes) + my Blood Pressure flashcards

Cardiovascular Diseases:

  • Common cardiovascular diseases, their pathophysiology, signs, and symptoms.

  • This includes coronary artery disease, heart failure, valvular heart disease, arrhythmias, and congenital heart defects.

Diagnostic Methods and Procedures:

  • Learn about the various diagnostic tools and procedures used in cardiology, such as echocardiography, cardiac catheterization, angiography, and stress testing.

I really liked Level Up RN's video discussing this (6 minutes). As always, here are my Cardiovascular Diagnosis flashcards on the vid.

Treatment Principles:

  • Understand the basics of treating cardiovascular diseases, including lifestyle modifications, pharmacotherapy (e.g., antihypertensives, anticoagulants, and statins), and interventions such as angioplasty and coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG).

Always love a good whiteboard explainer (8 minutes). Here are the Treating Cardiovascular disease flashcards on the video.

  1. We need to make sure we know the cardiovascular system visually

Here is a set of image occlusion cards on the cardiovascular system to learn where everything is

  1. Practice and master a range of clinical case scenarios

You always think you know how everything works until you see a story written out that completely throws you off your game. By practicing with cases you start to fill in more of the nuance behind the knowledge.

When I uploaded all the videos above to Wisdolia to get the flashcards it also created tons of clinical case scenarios for us to practice with as well. Here's the full cardiology set with flashcards, image occlusion, and clinical case scenarios.

Wisdolia is amazing for taking any piece of class material you have like your lecture slides or a YouTube video and creating high quality active learning resources for you like smart flashcards and case scenarios. What's wild is that when you answer the questions, it will give you feedback to tell you exactly what you got wrong and why and even what page in your slides it came from. Easily the best flashcard tool on the planet.

If this was helpful, check out our Ultimate respiratory study guide when you're in your resp block!