Here are some of my favorite stories
 
TCTMD

Risking COVID-19 for Professional Gain? Spring’s In-Person Meetings in Hindsight

June 16, 2022

 

With COVID-19 still as contagious as ever, I interview several physicians who tested positive following attendance at in-person meetings. Several others managed to travel unscathed, but all feel conflicted about how the field should move forward. more

‘Band-Aid’ Approach to Fixing Cuts to Physician Reimbursement Needs Rethink

March 30, 2022

 

Physicians look back, and forward, at how the cardiology community is affected by ongoing cuts to reimbursement made by CMS. more

Expired Cardiac Devices May Do Global Good, but Safety Unknown

August 26, 2021

 

Won a 2022 Bronze Award from the Digital Health Awards With an estimated hundreds of thousands of medical devices discarded in the US alone each year, some are seeking to use them for good instead of send them to the landfill. Of course, there are plenty of ethical and legal hurdles. more

Cardiology After COVID-19: Physicians Predict Lasting Change

May 20, 2020

 

COVID-19 put an abrupt stop to face-to-face clinical consults, structural interventions, elective procedures, cardiac rehab, and clinical trials. But as regions around the world take tentative steps to return to a new normal, many cardiologists are contemplating the short- and long-term impact of the pandemic. more

Subtherapeutic Heparin: As Stories Multiply, Concerns Mount

November 29, 2019

 

Anecdotal reports of subtherapeutic heparin have kept many cardiologists across the world on edge over the past couple of months, although no regulatory authority has yet confirmed a specific problem. more

#CardiologyToo? Sexual Harassment Also Infects Hospital Corridors and the Cath Lab

January 19, 2018

A mounting din of sexual harassment allegations has, for months, been echoing through entertainment and politics—it was only a matter of time before the issue was raised openly within the medical field. I investigate some stories in the cardiology field. more

A Dose for Doing: Healthcare Providers and Exercise Specialists Struggle With Prescribing Physical Activity

October 24, 2016

 

While exercise is viewed on par with pharmaceuticals to some healthcare professionals in terms of its ability to prevent and manage cardiovascular disease, providers vary widely in their opinions and practices of how they counsel patients to move. I interview physicians, exercise specialists, and a nurse for their thoughts on how they use subjective judgement to advise patients and what needs to change. more

 

 

 

Where Theory Meets Practice: Getting to the Heart of the Heart Team

 March 30, 2016

 

The Heart Team is a concept cardiologists have been using more or less in practice for close to a decade. But what it means for everyone involved differs depending on the institution, physician attitudes, and region. Here I explain the history of the concept and discover how it is currently being used in practice. more

 

 

 

As TAVI Turns 20, How Has the Heart Team Evolved?

May 4, 2022

 

The Heart Team has changed to meet the demands of not only structural heart disease but also other subspecialties of cardiology. I take a look at where it started and ask physicians to predict where it's going. more

Realistic Expectations Emerge After Initial Excitement Over Xenotransplant

January 21, 2022

 

The historic first pig-to-human transplant of a genetically modified heart in January 2022 proved a new paradigm for the way the field will move forward. However, many hurdles stand in the way of cardiac xenotransplant becoming routine clinical practice. more

Virtual Training Booms as COVID-19 Limits In-Person Proctoring, Observation

April 21, 2021

 

The concept of virtual training and the technology to enable it did not originate as a way to meet the challenges of 2020, but the pandemic certainly allowed it to blossom. Physicians have used video chat programs and other online tools to consult and brainstorm about cases as long as such systems have been available, but traditional observerships and proctoring relationships relied upon in-person interaction, which necessitated travel. more

Thanks to COVID-19, Cardiology Fellows Gain Unexpected Skills but Risk Losing Others

April 16, 2020

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has swept through cardiology training programs across the country, sending program directors scrambling to maintain some sense of a normal curriculum through virtual platforms. Fellows, on the other hand, are trading their planned education for shifts in ICU wards, all while doing their best to ensure safety and sanity. more

Structural Heart Hype: As Fellowship Programs Mushroom, Who’s Keeping Tabs on Quality and Numbers?

August 2, 2019

 

Unlike current training programs in interventional cardiology, which are overseen by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), structural heart fellowships are not beholden to any set curriculum, nor are they monitored by any governing body beyond the institution in which they are hosted. In fact, no one seems quite sure exactly how many of these programs even exist. more

Cardiologists Treating Syrian Refugees Call Missions an ‘Addictive’ Passion That Saves Lives

January 12, 2018

I speak with several cardiologists committed to treating refugees across the globe, often in war-torn regions with few resources. more

From Chaos to Consistency: How One Michigan Hospital Built a Heart Team That Works

April 27, 2016

 

Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is one of the state's highest volume cardiac centers. The cardiology team totally overhauled their system in early 2015 to allow for more organized and streamlined care processes, including instating weekly Heart Team meetings. I dive deep to discover how it is they ended up with a process that works so well that many of their members wish they could meet more often. more

 

 

 

Physician Dissatisfaction With MOC Goes Mainstream, Inspires Activism

May 7, 2015

 

Maintenance of Certification, or MOC, has become a hot topic--and a political one--within the medical community. The general consensus does not oppose lifelong learning, but does oppose the added costs and "time-wasting" activities sanctioned by the American Board of Internal Medicine in order to keep their credentials up to date. I talk with players on both sides of the debate, including representatives from a new credentialling board, to gauge changes in perspective over the past year and hypothesize what will happen in the future. more

 

Sit Back, Relax . . . and Respond to an In-flight Medical Emergency?

April 19, 2022

 

In-flight medical emergencies occur in about one in every 604 commercial flights. For cardiologists who travel often, attending to a syncope case or other, hopefully not serious event can be front of mind when planning for a trip. I spoke with several healthcare professionals who recently tended to patients in midair to hear about their experiences and thoughts about what others need to know. more

US Chest Pain Guidelines Will Change Practice, Though Gaps Remain

December 6, 2021

 

With the long-awaited release of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) chest pain guidelines, physicians across the US are mostly happy to see a wide swath of modalities represented that could be used to look for underlying coronary disease, with an emphasis on a patient-centered approach. But they also have wish lists for future iterations. more


AI in Cardiology: Where We Are Now and Where to Go Next
March 30, 2021

 

Artificial intelligence has become a buzzword in every cardiology subspecialty from imaging to electrophysiology, and researchers across the field’s spectrum are increasingly using it to look at big data sets and mine electronic health records.

But in concrete terms, what is the potential for AI—as well as its subcategories, like machine learning—to treat heart disease or improve research? And what are its greatest challenges? more

Telehealth Offers a Lifeline for Cardiology Patients During the COVID-19 Pandemic
March 24, 2020

 

As countries around the globe enforce social distancing and self-isolation to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth is emerging as a critical tool to connect physicians and other healthcare professionals with patients dealing with chronic cardiovascular conditions. more

Keeping Up With Cardiology: Old-School Learning Versus the Twittersphere

August 2, 2018

With half of respondents to a TCTMD survey saying the way they learn about cardiology research and news today is different than it was 5 years ago, I took a deep dive to see how those in the field get their information and how this is likely to change in the future. more

We Asked, You Answered: The Heart Team by the Numbers

April 13, 2016

 

I conducted a survey of more than 250 Heart Team members to determine how they really feel about the concept's use in practice. In tandem with a graphic designer, I created an infographic--TCTMD's first!--displaying the results, some of which might surprise you. more

 

 

 

Rising Awareness of Radiation Safety Trickles Down to Fellows

March 31, 2015

 

Radiation safety has become a hot topic in the field of medical education, and interventional cardiology trainees are paying special attention to new technologies and protection devices, particularly given that female fellows are often considering pregnancy and family planning at this point in their lives. I talk with fellows, a radiation safety expert, and a program director to get multiple perspectives on this issue. more

 

 

 

 

Elsewhere

Pinpointing primary hyperparathyroidism

ACP Internist

April 2022

 

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acpi-202202-detecting-depression-just-as-important-in-the-elderly_a1.jpg

Positioning patient portals for success

ACP Internist

November/December 2020

 

acpi-202011-positioning-patient-portals-for-success_a1.jpg

Wellness Travel: 5 Relaxing, Renewing Vacations

Alamo: The Scenic Route

January 2017

 

Scientists are working on building a hypoallergenic cashew that people with nut allergies could enjoy.

Why Vacations Are Healthy for You

Alamo: The Scenic Route

April 2016

 

Scientists are working on building a hypoallergenic cashew that people with nut allergies could enjoy.

Wearing Red is Not Enough

HealthCetera

February 2016

 

Scientists are working on building a hypoallergenic cashew that people with nut allergies could enjoy.
Scientists are working on building a hypoallergenic cashew that people with nut allergies could enjoy.
Scientists are working on building a hypoallergenic cashew that people with nut allergies could enjoy.

7 Surprising Urban Health Hazards

Refinery29

August 2014

 

Scientists are working on building a hypoallergenic cashew that people with nut allergies could enjoy.