Feature | May 07, 2007| Ryan Hiett

Heart Hospital: Turning the Tides

How the University of Mississippi Medical Center faces an uphill battle against cardiovascular disease.

Dr. Michael Winneford (left) and Dr. John Payne in UMC's new cardiovascular center (Photo by Jay Ferchaud)

Dr. Michael Winneford (left) and Dr. John Payne in UMC's new cardiovascular center (Photo by Jay Ferchaud)

Dr. Michael Winneford (left) and Dr. John Payne in UMC's new cardiovascular center (Photo by Jay Ferchaud)

If the cardiologists at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMC) in Jackson have been facing an uphill battle against cardiovascular disease, at least they’ve got some new state-of-the-art weapons. With four faculty members and nine fellows, the hospital’s Division of Cardiology has grown substantially over recent years. And to top it off, the hospital just received a new cardiovascular center that houses a large outpatient clinic.
The university itself has specialized hospital services that include an interventional MRI; separate medical, surgical, cardiac, neuroscience and pediatric ICUs; a heart station for diagnosis and treatment of heart disease; a heart failure clinic; heart, kidney, cornea and bone marrow transplant programs; and a comprehensive stroke unit.
According to Herman Taylor Jr., M.D., Mississippi is the perfect place for these programs as well as the latest heart center addition — the state has the third highest percentage of residents with heart disease, according to a study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Although the cardiovascular disease epidemic seems to be trailing off, Mississippi has not seen a decline in mortality,” the UMC professor of Medicine said.
But with all the latest research and technology at its fingertips, UMC is set to turn that trend around.
Breaking Ground with CRT
UMC cardiologists are the first in the state to connect with patients directly and get up-to-the-second information about their heart status from miles away. By implanting Boston Scientific’s Contak Renewal 3 RF cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillator (CRT-D) with the Zoom Latitude Programmer, they also can obtain and record precise blood pressure and weight measurements.
“Keeping heart failure patients feeling well and physically active is a major challenge,” said John Payne, M.D., UMC associate professor of Medicine and director of the Medical Center’s heart rhythm service. “Considerable time and effort of healthcare providers is required, adding to the already high cost of care. Heart failure patients must make frequent clinic visits to stay out of the hospital.”
He added that for rural states such as Mississippi, home monitoring of heart failure patients can reduce the need for frequent long-distance travel.
“This is a way of extending the care delivered at the office to the patients on a real-time basis as they really need it,” he said.
CRTs are indicated for patients with moderate-to-severe heart failure who maintain symptoms despite stable, optimal heart failure drug therapy. Patients must have left ventricular dysfunction (EF) less than or equal to 35 percent and QRS duration of greater than or equal to 120 ms.
The device includes four main parts: the wireless-enabled implantable device, an in-home monitoring unit that automatically reads and transmits information from the implanted device upon physician request; a secure Web site that provides around-the-clock access to patient data collected by the communicator; and a wireless programmer. The weight scale and blood pressure monitor are optional components.
According to Dr. Payne, UMC cardiologists have implanted more than 40 CRTs within the last 12 months. He said there are a number of home monitoring systems available for patients with implantable heart rhythm devices, including resynchronization devices for improving heart pumping action in patients with heart failure, defibrillators and pacemakers. He said information relayed remotely to the healthcare provider may include heart rhythm changes, device malfunction and fluid retention in the lungs.
Discovering the African-American Heart Disease Correlation
Dr. Taylor is head of the Jackson Heart Study — the largest study ever conducted examining the epidemiology of cardiovascular disease in African Americans.
So far, it has found that 37 percent of blacks in Jackson have metabolic syndrome, a collection of conditions that puts them at a much higher risk for coronary heart disease than the rest of the population.
“This study is somewhat of a biopsy on some of the underlying causes for that extraordinarily high rate of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in the state,” Dr. Taylor said.
Metabolic syndrome is generally diagnosed when a person has at least three of these conditions: elevated waist circumference, elevated triglycerides, reduced HDL or “good” cholesterol, elevated blood pressure and elevated fasting glucose.
The rates of metabolic syndrome ranged from 15.9 percent among 20-34-year-olds to a peak of 47.2 percent in those 65 and over.
“Profiles were different for different age groups,” Dr. Taylor said. “Central obesity is the most frequently occurring risk factor for all age groups, except the most elderly. Hypertension and elevated fasting blood glucose increased in frequency among the older age groups in particular, and low HDL appears to be less frequently a risk among older African-Americans, while triglycerides do not change substantially.”
Dr. Taylor said one of the main goals of the study is to enhance the community’s health awareness and understanding of cardiovascular disease through seminars and workshops on the disease, diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol and nutrition.

Related Content

Siemens Healthineers, Somatom Drive CT system, FDA clearance
Technology | Computed Tomography (CT)| August 30, 2016
Siemens Healthineers announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the Somatom Drive computed...
CT angiography, CTA, coronary CT, cardiac CT, SCCT, society of cardiovascular computed tomography, cardiac imaging
Feature | CT Angiography (CTA)| August 03, 2016 | Dave Fornell
The Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography (SCCT) annual meeting offers an in-depth review of all aspects of c
CT angiography, CTA, Medicare population, Harvey L. Neiman Health Policy Institute study, Neiman HPI
News | CT Angiography (CTA)| August 02, 2016
According to a new study, the last 13 years have seen substantial growth in the ordering of computed tomography...
Sponsored Content | Videos | Computed Tomography (CT)| July 08, 2016
Interview with Claudio Smuclovisky, M.D., FACC, FSCCT, director of South Florida Imaging Cardiovascular Institute, Ho
Sponsored Content | Videos | CT Angiography (CTA)| July 08, 2016
Interview with Patricia Dickson, LRT (CT), assistant director, diagnostic and outpatient services, Capital Cardiology
Sponsored Content | Videos | Computed Tomography (CT)| July 07, 2016
DAIC/ITN editor Dave Fornell shows some of the most innovative new cardiac CT and angiography technologies from sessi
Sponsored Content | Videos | Computed Tomography (CT)| July 07, 2016
An interview with Matthew Budoff, M.D., FACC, director of cardiac CT, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Torrance, Calif., a
Sponsored Content | Videos | Computed Tomography (CT)| July 06, 2016
An interview with Leslee Shaw, Ph.D, FACC, FASNC, FAHA, co-director of the Emory Clinical Cardiovascular Research Ins
Sponsored Content | Videos | CT Angiography (CTA)| July 06, 2016
An interview with Ricardo Cury, M.D., director of cardiac imaging, Miami Cardiac and Vascular Institute, at the Socie
HeartFlow, FFR-CT Analysis, next-generation platform, second FDA clearance
Technology | CT Angiography (CTA)| June 29, 2016
HeartFlow Inc. announced that it is launching its next generation of the HeartFlow FFR-CT Analysis. The result of years...
Overlay Init