Happy Thanksgiving to all — I wanted to send a brief note expressing gratitude and appreciation for all the things you do for our patients and our Duke Heart Team. Over the last several years we have spent time focusing on ensuring we keep our patients and each other safe and healthy. At the same time, we have had an unwavering commitment to train the next generation of leaders in cardiovascular medicine while refocusing our energies on making meaningful discoveries. This has all been on the backdrop of ever-changing landscape in healthcare, where we are fortunate to be part of a system like Duke. This work has been hard and at times difficult to accomplish our missions, leaving us feeling stressed and out of energy.
The Thanksgiving holiday is a time to spend with friends and family catching up and reflecting on the past year, with gratitude for all the things we have. Reflecting on the last year, I am in awe of the amazing effort by so many, the impact of the discoveries and research we conduct, and the care we have provided – at times through silent acts, often in the service of others. Personally, the relationships we have with each other, and the example that you all set for our patients, colleagues, and our teams helps in part provide the fuel and energy to accomplish our missions.
I hope you all get some time with your family and loved ones over the upcoming weeks. I also want to thank those of you that are helping cover our clinical services so we can continue to help all of the patients and our community that need care during these times.
As we continue forward in service and purpose of our missions and patients, we hope you have some time to focus on your own health and can recharge for the upcoming year.
Highlights of the week:
Latest STS Star Ratings for Thoracic Surgery Released
Congratulations to our outstanding thoracic surgery team! The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) has posted the General Thoracic Surgery Database Fall 2023 Analysis that includes results for cases between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2023. The Star Ratings for both Duke University Hospital and Duke Raleigh Hospital continue to excellent!
The Star Ratings for both DUH and DRaH for the previous and current harvest are represented in the chart shown here.
Way to go!
Annual Turkey Bowl Matchup
The tradition continues! Many thanks to all who participated as players and officials in the annual Turkey Bowl on Thanksgiving Day – and thanks to all our fans who came to cheer the teams on. The annual Duke vs. VA matchup resulted in a 21-21 tie!
Kudos to Regan!
We received a note of kudos for cardiology fellow Jessica Regan this week.
“Hi Anna Lisa, I just wanted to send kudos to Jess R. for outstanding work on her overnight shift last night. She helped with a complex post-procedure patient with grace and total professionalism. I am so proud of her as a young doctor and former Duke chief. Hope you pass along how thankful we were in the lab that she helped us care for this patient.” – Jenn Rymer, MD
Nicely done, Jess!
Shout-out to Salah!
We received a shout-out to cardiology fellow Husam Salah this week.
“First-year cardiology fellow Husam Salah stepped up to cover two CICU shifts this week at the last minute for unanticipated illnesses. Much appreciated Husam!” – Anna Lisa Chamis, MD
Domino Heart Transplant Success for Children with Congenital Heart Disease
When three-month-old Asher Hobby needed a heart transplant, his parents eagerly agreed to help save another life at the same time. In June 2023 at Duke Health, Asher received a new heart from a deceased donor — then the healthy valves and arteries from Asher’s old heart were transplanted into another infant with heart disease.
Months later, both children are growing stronger and healthier every day.
The innovation, known as a domino heart transplant, builds on the technique of partial heart transplantation pioneered at Duke in 2022 and may increase the number of hearts available for children in need. Instead of using mechanical valves that require multiple revision surgeries over time, the partial heart transplant uses human valves that will grow along with the child.
“It’s probably one of the biggest advances in congenital heart surgery in the last 40 years,” said Duke pediatric heart surgeon Joseph Turek, MD, who led both surgeries. “It’s a wonderful setup where two children can benefit from one initial gift.”
Greensboro, NC residents Kayle Cooper and Drew Hobby became concerned when their newborn son Asher stopped eating normally. Local doctors discovered Asher’s heart muscle was damaged beyond repair. Cooper and Hobby brought Asher to Duke, where he was hospitalized and placed on the national heart transplant waitlist.
Several months later, Asher’s parents got the news they’d been waiting for; Asher had been matched with a donor heart. The opportunity came with a chance to help another child with heart disease, one who needed new heart valves. Although Asher’s heart muscle was damaged, his heart valves were healthy. “When we were asked if we would like for Asher’s heart valves to be donated, we immediately said ‘yes, of course we would!’” Cooper said.
First, Asher’s heart was removed and replaced with the donor’s heart. Then, instead of discarding Asher’s old heart, surgeons harvested its healthy valves and arteries and transplanted them into the other child at Duke the next day. Four months later, both children are growing and meeting important developmental milestones.
Turek hopes more pediatric heart centers will adopt the domino heart transplant approach to save more babies’ lives.
“Twenty percent of infants waiting for a heart transplant won’t get one,” he said. “Finding a way to double the number of patients who can receive the gift of organ donation is going to help so many children who may have otherwise died waiting on a heart transplant. My mission is to spread this idea to other institutions and make it available for kids across the country and hopefully across the world.”
*This story is also featured in a Duke Health video, which can be viewed on YouTube: https://youtu.be/E7roMzDCeAU
Ginsburg to Receive PMWC Luminary Award
Congratulations to Duke adjunct professor of medicine in cardiology, Geoffrey S. Ginsburg, MD, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer for the NIH All of Us Research Program. Ginsburg has been selected to receive the Precision Medicine World Conference (PMWC) Luminary Award! He was selected by the PMWC for his pioneering work in personalized and genomic medicine.
Through Ginsburg’s research efforts and collaborations, he has made significant contributions to the fields of oncology, infectious diseases, cardiovascular disease, and metabolic disorders. He has also served as an outstanding leader in the field — as co-chair of the National Academies Roundtable on Genomic and Precision Health and as founder and inaugural president of the Global Genomics Medicine Consortium (G2MC), as well as co-chair of the International 100K+ Cohorts Consortium.
The award will be presented to Ginsburg in January when the 2024 PMWC convenes at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Silicon Valley, CA.
This week! 5th Annual Invented at Duke Celebration
Duke’s Office for Translation & Commercialization (OTC) will hold its 2023 ‘Invented at Duke’ celebration next week on Tuesday, November 28, 2023, from 4:30-7 p.m. at Duke’s Penn Pavilion. Their annual showcase of Duke inventors and inventions will include remarks from Vincent Price, president of Duke University, Robin Rasor, head of OTC, and Jungsang Kim, the Schiciano Family Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and co-founder of IonQ.
Whether you’re already part of the Duke entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem or you’re just starting to explore how to bring your research out to the public – or perhaps you’re a member of the wider Triangle technology commercialization ecosystem – there will be something to learn and celebrate.
The event is free, but registration is required. You’ll receive an e-ticket to present at the door. The attire is business casual. Parking can be found at the Bryan Center Parking Garage – follow event signs and tell the attendant at the entrance and exit that you’re there for Invented at Duke and you will receive free parking.
Upcoming Events & Opportunities
- November is Native American Heritage Month; Men’s Health month, and Lung Cancer Awareness month.
- Masking is strongly recommended throughout all clinical areas during respiratory virus season, from now through early March.
Cardiology Grand Rounds
Nov. 28: Topic TBD, presenter TBD. 5 p.m., DN2002 or via Zoom.
All 2023 Duke Cardiology Grand Rounds recordings are uploaded to Warpwire. Recordings can be accessed via this link: https://duke.is/DukeCGR; NET ID and password required.
CD Fellows Core Curriculum Conference
Nov. 29: Match Day Review. Zoom only.
Dec. 1: Stress Testing with Anna Lisa Chamis. Noon, Zoom only.
Call for Abstracts: Duke’s Annual Quality & Safety Conference
Save the date for Duke’s Annual Quality and Safety Conference scheduled for April 11 in the Trent Semans Center. Click here to view Abstract Guidelines. Abstracts are due by 5 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2023. Late submissions will not be accepted. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com with any questions.
A&H Winterfest 2023
The dates for Winterfest Marketplace 2023, the annual holiday art show and sale hosted by Arts & Health at Duke, will take place across six Thursdays in November and December, local North Carolina-based artisans will display and sell their work to Duke Health employees, visitors and patients in the main concourse of Duke Hospital.
The event begins November 2 and runs until December 14. During Winterfest, art will be available for purchase on Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Featured artisans will include Beth Ann Taylor, Chapel Hill Woodturners, Bonnie Toney, and Justin Leitner.
A portion of the proceeds from Winterfest will go back to Arts & Health at Duke, which provides support to patients through music, visual art activities and journaling. This is a great opportunity to support local artists, the Arts & Health programming at Duke Health, and to score some beautiful holiday gifts for loved ones!
Have news to share?
If you have news to share with the Pulse readership, please contact Tracey Koepke, director of communications for Duke Heart at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to hear about your latest accomplishments, professional news, cool happenings, and any events or opportunities that may be of interest to our Duke Heart family. Please call with any questions: 919-681-2868. Feedback on Pulse is welcome and encouraged. Submissions by Noon, Wednesdays, to be considered for weekend inclusion.
Duke Heart in the News:
November 17 — Duke University
November 20 — Kunal Patel
Medical Product Outsourcing
November 20 — Manesh Patel
November 21 — Duke Raleigh Hospital
Triad City Beat
November 21 — Suresh Balu