Local cardiologist Arshad Ali, M.D., and cardiothoracic surgeon Marcos Nores, M.D., have been named associate medical directors of the Kentucky Heart Foundation (KHF). They will provide leadership for research projects at KHF. Executive director of the Foundation is Regina Stout.
With a focus on improving the cardiovascular outcomes for the residents of eastern Kentucky, southeastern Ohio and western West Virginia, KHF works to bring the latest device and drug therapies to the area. Partnering with progressive cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, vascular surgeons and interventional radiologists at King’s Daughters Medical Center provides KHF the opportunity to respond to important clinical issues in order to improve care for patients, now, and for generations to come.
The Kentucky Heart Foundation works with device and drug manufacturers to bring new research programs to the region, and is currently focused on research to improve the assessment, prevention and treatment of acute coronary syndrome, angina, lipid disorders, atrial fibrillation, heart failure and vascular disease, “The Kentucky Heart Foundation is on the front lines of important new discoveries in cardiovascular medicine, and by participating in research studies, adds to scientific knowledge,” Dr. Ali said. “As a physician, it is exciting to be involved in the research side of medicine, knowing that it ultimately leads to better treatment for our patients.”
The Foundation investigates new medications and devices that already have proven beneficial in early studies, Dr. Ali said. Many of the clinical trials are near the end of testing and on the verge of FDA approval and entering the marketplace. Local patients enrolled in clinical trials through KHF benefit through availability of medicines and devices not yet available to the public, he said.
In the United States, more than 650,000 people die from heart disease and many more are disabled each year. Heart disease is the leading cause of death and accounts for about 27% of all U.S. deaths. While the term heart disease includes several specific heart conditions, the most common is coronary heart disease, which can lead to heart attack.
And even though heart disease mortality rates, in general, are declining, heart and vascular diseases affect the people of our region at a much higher rate than others in Kentucky, or throughout the U.S. Overall cardiovascular mortality for our region has decreased 21.7 percent in the past few years, but still is 28 percent higher than the national average.
On a positive note, however, there are steps to take to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, Stout adds, making education and prevention programming important components of KHF. Knowing and preventing your controllable risk factors is the first step. The risk factors that you control include diet, activity level, weight, tobacco use and sodium intake, she said.
It also is important to know and act on the early signs of a heart attack. The quicker that a person seeks medical attention during a heart attack the more positive the outcomes. People that have had a heart attack also can reduce their risk of future attacks.
Associate medical directors Dr. Nores and Dr. Ali bring to the Foundation extensive training in heart disease. A 1983 medical school graduate of Rawalpindi Medical College in Pakistan, Dr. Ali continued his medical education with a residency (1994) at SUNY Buffalo, Buffalo, N.Y.; and a fellowship (1998) at St. John Hospital, Detroit, Mich., and (1997) Ochsner Foundation Hospital and Clinic, New Orleans, La. He is board certified with the American Board of Internal Medicine, with subspecialty certifications in Cardiovascular Disease and Interventional Cardiology.
Dr. Nores is a 1989 medical school graduate of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. He continued his medical education by completing an internship (1993) at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, Boston, Mass.; and a surgery residency at Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif. (1998); a thoracic surgery residency at George Washington University, Washington, D.C. (2000); and served as an associate staff member at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation (2000-2003). He is board certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Thoracic Surgery.
For additional information about the Kentucky Heart Foundation, visit online at kyheartfoundation.com or kdmc.com, or call 1.888.377.5362.
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