NewYork-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center

Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute

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About Us

A Top-Notch Team

The Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute is lead by a stellar medical team, which includes O. Wayne Isom, M.D., Cardiothoracic Surgeon-in-Chief, Bruce Lerman, M.D., Cardiologist-in-Chief, Karl H. Krieger, M.D., Vice Chair, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Leonard Girardi, M.D., Attending Cardiothoracic Surgeon. These doctors have an international reputation of performing cutting edge surgery and upholding the most exacting standards for patient care, and they are poised to train the next generation of heart specialists and explore new boundaries in clinical applications.

In a specially created position, Dr. Holly Andersen, a leading authority on preventive cardiology, serves as the Institute’s Director of Education and Outreach overseeing patient education, community outreach and preventive efforts with the goal of reducing cardiovascular risk, especially among women. Coupled with an onsite Nurse Educator who provides easy to understand explanations of cardiac procedures, treatment plans, post-operative care, recovery timelines and prevention, Dr. Andersen and her team underscores the Institute’s strong commitment to raising awareness about the risks of heart disease and helping people adopt healthier lifestyles through education.

Patient Education and Community Outreach

An interactive education resource center is available in the medical town square for those who are interested in the latest information on heart disease, from prevention and diagnosis to treatment and lifelong health.

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital understands that heart disease knows no boundaries and cuts across all socio-economic groups. The Perelman Heart Institute continues the Hospital’s longstanding tradition of educating the community about preventative measures against this deadly disease. Our outreach efforts target patients, community members, young physicians at other hospitals, and will employ lectures and community screening events. For those found to be at risk for heart disease, NewYork-Presbyterian referrals are provided and individuals will be encouraged to make an appointment with his/her own primary care physician for further evaluation.

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital is proud of our patient-centered approach to health care, and the services offered by the Perelman Heart Institute reflect that priority. Medical Concierge staff provides up-to-the-minute information on patient status as well as beepers for family members, allowing them to keep in touch even if they step outside the Institute’s immediate vicinity. Staff will also try to lessen the burden on patient families by providing recommendations for dining, lodging and other necessities.

State-of-the-Art Care

The Perelman Heart Institute provides patients with the very latest technology and treatment options – from new minimally invasive procedures and medications to developing specialized approaches to preventing and treating heart disease in both men and women. In the hands of our expert physicians, the latest minimally invasive technologies are a vital tool for the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease allowing quicker recovery times and lessening the pain, blood loss and scarring generally associated with traditional heart surgery. The Institute uses advanced imaging systems to improve the precision of the catheterizations and increase the accuracy of stent placements. As a result, fewer patients will require additional catheterization procedures, have a lower risk of infection, a shorter recovery time and the overall patient experience is improved.

This powerful technology offers NewYork-Presbyterian not only a superior digital image of the heart, but one that can be made available to medical teams institution-wide within two hours of the image transfer. This quick access to the cardiac image allows a patient’s team of physicians – specialists, internists and surgeons – to rapidly share information and coordinate treatment plans. The result is comprehensive, coordinated patient care that is second to none.

A Special Focus on Women

According to the American Heart Association, approximately 58 million Americans currently suffer from cardiovascular disease. While these statistics are staggering, they don’t discriminate: close to half a million women die each year from heart disease and stroke – nearly twice the mortality of all forms of cancer combined. In fact, women are twice as likely as men to die after suffering a heart attack. Why? Many women are unaware of their risk factors because until recently cardiovascular health was primarily considered a man’s issue. As a result, women are much less likely to seek treatment when they experience a cardiac incident, often because they fail to identify the symptoms until it’s too late.

The Perelman Heart Institute bridges this gender gap in information and outcome. Through public and patient education, investment in talent and technology and innovative design of space, our patients and their families receive the highest level of compassionate care in the most accommodating, easy-to-navigate and nurturing environment. The Institute’s "medical town square," staffed with patient-focused medical professionals, feature a patient-friendly welcome center, an interactive education resource center, a history wall detailing the milestones and accomplishments of cardiovascular care over time, a café and comfortable waiting areas. Education and strategies for prevention are especially important when treating cardiovascular disease because for many of our patients a sensible diet and lifestyle are two of the easiest ways to stay healthy. Women especially need to focus on prevention: according to the CDC, two-thirds of women who have a heart attack fail to make a full recovery.