In the News
News clips covering UA Sarver Heart Center
When Dr. Karl Kern isn't studying resuscitation science or caring for patients as a highly productive interventional cardiologist, you might find him fly fishing along some isolated riverway where he becomes "unplugged." Kern is now plugged in and conducting a clinical research study that could lead to further improvements in post-arrest survival.
Who really needs another LDL-lowering drug? Joseph Alpert, MD, of the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center discusses groups that would stand to benefit and the potential for broader use.
Don’t freak out—but do consider your risks for these deadly diseases, and how to prevent them
About one in 500 people have some form of Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, which causes the walls of your heart muscle to thicken and lose their pumping power. Approximately 1 percent of people with the disorder die suddenly each year, usually because of a too-rapid heartbeat—and many of them are young and unaware they even have heart issues. Most cases of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy are genetic, says Jil Tardiff, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Arizona College of Medicine.
Dr. Nancy Sweitzer, director of Sarver Heart Center, professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Cardiology at the UA College of Medicine — Tucson, has made impactful strides in the field of medicine as well as the empowerment of women.
When asked what makes him different from his colleagues, Dr. Frank I. Marcus says with a smile, "Stubbornness and self-confidence, a combination of those two. Everyone encounters adverse blockages in their career, and when I've encountered these, I've said I am going to continue."
The Gootter Foundation has raised more than $2.5 million to support research of sudden cardiac death, plus donated more than 110 AEDs and funded 10 investigator grants ranging from $25,000 to $50,000 to support Sarver Heart Center researchers.
Wildcat basketball fans received a treat in their seats at the game against the Oregon Ducks, cheer cards with a heart-felt message. Sudden cardiac arrest kills a thousand people every day in the United States, according to the Gootter Foundation. They've teamed up with the UA's McKale Center to train Tucsonans on the chest-compression-only method CPR developed by the Sarver Heart Center. UA alumni Channing Frye took part in a public service announcement explaining the three c's: check, call, compress.
The University of Arizona has announced the creation of the Arizona Center for Accelerated Biomedical Innovation, a place where investigators can work with other experienced innovators to flesh out their ideas, consider next steps in the development of their technologies, and access scientific and business resources to move those ideas forward. It will be headed by Dr. Marvin Slepian, a cardiologist with the UA Sarver Heart Center.
Spencer Cummins was born on Aug. 20, 2014, right on time, and weighing a healthy 8 pounds, 4 ounces. But Spencer also arrived with a double knot in his umbilical cord, his skin blue from oxygen deprivation. Within a few hours, Michael and Pamela Cummins received devastating news. An echocardiogram showed their son had multiple heart defects. Spencer was in congestive heart failure. There was little hope he could survive.
But he has survived. And for that, his parents are immeasurably grateful to doctors at Northwest, UAMC and Phoenix Children’s Hospital, where Spencer underwent open-heart surgery when he was six days old. They also are grateful to Dr. Scott Klewer, a 1991 graduate of the UA College of Medicine, now UA professor of pediatrics and chief of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology and former chief of staff at UAMC, who has overseen Spencer's care since his birth.
Dr. Lori Mackstaller said states with the highest rates of obesity are those where people are least able to afford health care and food. They also have the highest rates of chronic disease.
Cardiac arrest — when the heart completely stops beating — is a major public health problem. It occurs approximately 400,000 times annually in the United States and accounts for one out of five natural deaths. Fortunately, there are effective resuscitation treatments and systems of care in place in Arizona to maximize survival.
Catherine MacDonald joined the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center and the Division of Cardiology at the UA College of Medicine in Tucson as manager of cardiology research. She also will negotiate clinical research contracts and work with the development team to obtain philanthropic support for clinical research.
UA Sarver Heart Center cardiologist, Dr. Charles Katzenberg, says the symptoms of heart attack can be hard to distinguish from serious indigestion. Holiday over-eating can lead to some serious stress, with some people wondering "is it heartburn, or am I having a heart attack?"
Epinephrine (adrenaline) given before hospital arrival for cardiac arrest was associated with poorer chances of survival without substantial mental disability, an observational study showed. Gordon A. Ewy, MD, emeritus director of the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center, and Karl B. Kern, MD, co-director of the UA Sarver Heart Center, comment on the study's limitation. Includes video comments from Dr. Kern.
State researchers in Arizona examined the aggressive use of so-called pre-arrival telephone CPR guidelines -- step-by-step dispatcher instructions on administering cardiopulmonary resuscitation before trained rescuers arrive -- and found that it bumped survival of cardiac arrest patients from about 8 percent to more than 11 percent.
Is lower better for LDL? Dr. Lori Mackstaller provides a primary care doctor's view on the IMPROVE-IT trial shows that adding ezetimibe to statin lowers LDL.
The University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center's Dr. Joseph Alpert says that you can lower cholesterol levels by as much as 10 to 15 percent by following a low-cholesterol diet.
Oxygen therapy has long been standard practice in patients with suspected ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), but results from a late-breaking trial presented November 19, 2014, at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions suggest that eliminating this strategy may lead to smaller infarcts and less recurrent MI at 6 months. The UA Sarver Heart Center's Karl B. Kern, MD, points out several unanswered questions that warrant further research.
Dr. Karl B. Kern, co-director of the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center, comments on the shortcomings of the Oxygen Therapy (AVOID) study presented at the 2014 American Heart Association Science Conferences.
Doctors say if you have ever wondered what's in your lunch bag, there's a good bet that it's sugar. A special screening of a movie called "Fed Up" is being put on by the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center at Tucson's Loft Cinema on Tuesday, October 21st from 6 until 9 in the evening. Dr. Nancy K. Sweitzer points out that if you consume too much refined sugar too fast, the liver turns it into fat.
After suspending its heart transplant program late last year, the University of Arizona Medical Center has re-activated its program and discharged its first heart transplant patient Oct. 8. Randy Shepherd got his new heart from a donor at UAMC on Sept. 15. His transplant surgeon was Zain Khalpey, MD, PhD, director of the Mechanical Circulatory Support Program at UA Medical Center.
Randy Shepherd, an Arizona resident nicknamed the "tin man," has received a donor heart transplant after 15 months of support from the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart. He was transplanted September 15, 2014, by Dr. Zain Khalpey, MD, PhD, director of the Mechanical Circulatory Support Program at University of Arizona Medical Center, and discharged October 8.
Victoria Maizes, MD, discusses the role of sugar in weight gain and the upcoming panel discussion and special screening of the movie "Fed Up" on Oct. 21.
Atrial fibrillation already affects as many as 3-million people in the United States and that number could hit 12-million by 2050. Dr. Julia Indik, a Cardiologist and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center says a person is at increased stroke risk if they have had heart failure, high blood pressure, diabetes, a history of stroke or mini-stroke, vascular disease, are 65 to 75 years old or are a woman.
Hoping to reduce post-surgical deaths in cardiac patients, Dr. Zain Khalpey, a University of Arizona surgeon is testing the healing powers of heart patches made from amniotic tissue. The intent of the patch is preventing atrial fibrillation, which is an irregular, rapid heart rate caused by chaotic electrical signals in the heart’s upper two chambers, or atria. In postoperative patients, atrial fibrillation causes permanent damage to the heart and puts the patient at risk for major complications including stroke and heart failure.
New Method for Healing Hearts
Yuma News Now, Sept. 29, 2014
In a cutting-edge new clinical trial, the University of Arizona's Dr. Zain Khalpey is using tissue from the human placenta to help heal hearts after surgery. Dr. Khalpey is the UA Sarver Heart Center's Marnell Endowed Chair for Research in Cardiothoracic Surgery.
Talking to Your Doctor About Atrial Fibrillation
KGUN9 News, Sept. 29, 2014
Julia Indik, MD, PhD, a cardiologist specializing in electrophysiology at the UA Sarver Heart Center talks about atrial fibrillation, along with Judy Barnett who has the heart condition.
Probiotics: Moderate Impact on BP?
MedPage Today, July 23, 2014
Supplement is the key word, since the blood pressure lowering was "minor," commented Nancy K. Sweitzer, MD, PhD, chief of cardiology at the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center in Tuscon.