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Duke Heart Pulse — March 10, 2024

Chief’s message:

Busy week at Duke Heart with lots of faculty and fellows working hard to get ready for the American College of Cardiology meeting (ACC 2024), taking care of patients with teams working to help solve problems in unique ways (e.g. Nicole Pristera and AHF teams caring for patients with mechanical devices), and Duke – UNC basketball game weekend.  This next week starts the spring break season with the upcoming easter week being the most popular week for spring break in the area.  So, however you connect with us at Duke Heart, we are grateful for your continued support and hope you and your family get time this spring to spend time to recharge, get perspective, and appreciate the difference we are able to make with Duke Heart.  Please find highlights from the week below.

Highlights of the week:

Ramadan Begins Tonight

Now that we’re past the always exciting Battle of the Blues and ESPN Game Day, we hope everyone is adjusting to the return of daylight saving time (which occurred this morning — hopefully you remembered!). Today also marks the start of Ramadan. To all those on our team and beyond who are participating, we wish you, “Ramadan Mubarak!”

Kittipibul Wins Abstract Competition at THT 

We are thrilled to share that Mark Kittipibul, MD, a third-year Duke cardiology fellow, won the Fellows’ Abstract Competition at the Cardiovascular Research Foundation’s (CRF) Technology and Heart Failure Therapeutics (THT) 3rd annual meeting. THT 2024 was held March 4-6 at the Westin Boston Seaport in Boston.

Kittipibul won for his abstract presentation, “Blood Volume Profiles and Correlations with Pressures in Heart Failure with Impaired Renal Function,” which utilized data from the Multi-center Blood Volume Analysis Registry led by Marat Fudim, MD, who is also his mentor.

Great job, Mark!

Cardiac Ultrasound Students Awarded National Scholarships

We’re pleased to announce that three students training in our Duke Cardiac Ultrasound Certificate Program (DCUCP) have been selected as national scholarship award recipients.

Mariah Byington has been selected to receive the Alan Waggoner Award and Anna Lise McGowan has been selected to receive the Sandy Katanick Award from the American Society of Echocardiography (ASE). The awards will be presented to them during ASE’s upcoming 35th Annual Scientific Sessions planned for June 14-16, 2024 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, OR. Each award comes with a $1,000 scholarship and $1,000 for travel to the meeting.

Morgan Osborne has been selected as the recipient of the Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI) Aaron S. White Educational Grant. Of the two CCI grants awarded annually, only one goes to a student. Osborne will receive $2,500.

This is the third year in a row that DCUCP students have earned ASE awards and the second year in a row that one of our students has won the CCI grant. Congratulations, Morgan, Mariah, and Anna Lise!


Shah to Serve on ACC Faculty Development Work Group

Nishant Shah

Nishant Shah, MD, assistant professor of medicine in cardiology, has been selected for the Faculty Development Work Group (FDWG) of the American College of Cardiology (ACC). He will serve for two years. The mission of the FDWG is to educate and develop ACC faculty and to support the education endeavors of the College.

Last year, Shah was selected for the ACC’s highly competitive Emerging Faculty Leadership Academy. With this next step, Shah will have the opportunity to help create and lead educational content for the ACC. His first meeting as a member of the FDWG will occur during the ACC Annual Scientific Sessions taking place from April 6-8 in Atlanta, GA. 

Congratulations, Nishant!


Think-tanks, CRT Annual Meeting Taking Place in DC

It’s another busy weekend in Washington for cardiovascular leaders from Duke! 

Cardiovascular Research Technologies (CRT) is holding its annual meeting at the Washington Hilton Hotel in Washington, DC (March 9-12). CRT is a leading educational forum on new cardiovascular technology and procedures for physicians and healthcare professionals. For this year’s meeting, Mitch Krucoff, MD is serving as course director for the Cardiogenic Shock, FDA Town Hall, and Japan FDA Town Hall programs.

Duke/Duke Clinical Research Institute, in conjunction with the CRT meeting, holds annual in-person think tanks for two of their most mature public-private partnerships (PPP) under Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) between Duke/DCRI and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). Think-tanks are being held this weekend for the Cardiac Safety Research Consortium (CSRC), which is in its 18th year, and the Medical Device Epidemiology Network (MDEpiNet) Predictable And SuStainable Implementation Of National CardioVascular Registries (PASSION CV Registries), a PPP in its 12th year.

The CSRC think-tank program will focus on cardiogenic shock and features the American Heart Association’s national Cardiogenic Shock Registry—a part of the AHA’s Get With the Guidelines registry portfolio (and the only professional society-sponsored shock registry in the world) — as the team rolls out their first pilot research directions for 2024. Krucoff co-chairs the Cardiogenic Shock Registry steering committee with David Morrow, MD, director of the Levine Cardiac Intensive Care Unit at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

The MDEpiNet think-tank program will focus on multiple areas of novel clinical trial approaches to regulatory science and evidence development for heart valves, coronary devices, PAD intervention, mechanical circulatory support devices for shock, and aortic intervention. Drs. Jimmy Tcheng; C. Michael Gibson and Bobby Yeh of Harvard; David Erlinge from the Swedish Coronary Angiography and Angioplasty Registry (SCAAR); and Ernest Spitzer from Cardialysis in Rotterdam, Netherlands, along with multiple industry experts, including Bram Zuckerman from the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiologic Health (CDRH) who will focus on advancing real-world data interoperability to support better, more efficient and re-usable prospective device trial operations and evidence quality.


Growing Cardiovascular Care Services in Low-Resource Settings

As part of the Duke Department of Medicine celebration of Black History Month, Titus Ngeno, MD, assistant professor of medicine in cardiology and member of the Duke Global Health Institute was highlighted in a Q&A on Feb. 27.

Born and raised in Kenya, he trained in medicine at the University of Nairobi and then as a medical officer at Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH) in Eldoret, Kenya, where he became known to several Duke faculty members as an outstanding clinician with notable leadership qualities. 

Ngeno is a graduate of the Master of Science in Global Health program at Duke and he recently completed the global health pathway for a second time as a cardiovascular disease global health fellow. He completed his medical training in 2017, choosing to pursue cardiology and global health as a specialist because the unique combination allowed him to spend time caring for patients at the bedside while working to improve access to health care.

The Q&A piece is well worth checking out, as Titus speaks about his passion for helping improve cardiovascular care both here and abroad.


Shout-out to Thakkar!

Anna Lisa Chamis shared a wonderful note she received this week regarding patient care and guidance provided by Aarti Thakkar.

“Dear Dr. Chamis, I wanted to send a big shout-out filled with gratitude to the cardiology fellow Dr. Aarti Thakkar. I am a neurology resident covering nights this week, and we had a floor stroke patient we were concerned may be developing cardiogenic shock. We walked over to the CCU for advice, and Dr. Thakkar was very kind with some guidance. She then walked over to evaluate the patient herself and recommended transfer to the CCU for further care. She went above and beyond to help us, and she provided the best care for the patient. I just wanted to share how much we appreciated her assistance.” — Jordan Larsen, Neurology PGY3

Nicely done, Aarti!


Kudos to Pinel!

We are pleased to recognize Duke Heart nursing team member Anna Pinel, CNIV, of our 3200/7200 Cardiology Stepdown unit for her heroic effort at a bowling alley last weekend.  Anna was competing in a bowling tournament when another player collapsed. Anna quickly jumped in to administer CPR – providing solo CPR until EMS arrived. The gentleman was transported to a local hospital for further treatment and is expected to make a full recovery. The physicians who received the patient shared that, without Anna’s efforts, the outcome would have been vastly different.  

“We are so proud to have Anna on our Duke Heart team!!!”team members from 3200/7200

 “Anna, I am truly moved by the incredible courage and selflessness displayed by you! Your swift and unwavering response during the bowling tournament is nothing short of heroic. It’s heartwarming to hear that the gentleman is expected to recover! The fact that you persisted with high-quality CPR for ten minutes is a testament to your determination!!! I can only imagine how emotionally challenging this experience must have been for you. We are all immensely proud to have you as part of the Duke nursing family,” said Chantal Howard, Chief Nursing and Patient Care Services Officer, Duke University Hospital

 “Your actions saved this man’s life and truly impacted him and his family. Truly amazing and we are fortunate to have you on the Duke Heart/ Duke team.”Mary Lindsay, Associate Chief Nursing Officer, Duke Heart Services

This is amazing and I’m very proud of Anna for jumping in and literally saving a life,”Jill Engel, Service Line VP, Duke Heart & Vascular Services

Way to go, Anna!


ICYMI: Intramural Basketball Player Rescued with CPR, AED

For another example of Duke team members using CPR to save a life, read about what occurred when a Duke physical therapist collapsed in Wilson Recreation Center and quick-thinking, well-trained individuals revived him. The story was featured in the March 6 issue of Duke Today.



DUHS Leadership Updates

Two leadership updates were made on Thurs., March 7 by Tom Owens, executive vice-president and COO, Duke University Health System (DUHS), and Gregory Pauly, president, Duke University Hospital (DUH).

First, Kristie Barazsu, MBA has been named Associate Chief Operating Officer (ACOO) for Patient Flow, Emergency Services, and Support Services at DUH. Kristie has served as ACOO in an interim capacity since May 2023. Kristie assumes this role permanently, effective immediately.

In addition to the service areas mentioned above, Kristie will have oversight of the Operations Administrators (OAs), Patient Information Services, and contractual relationships for Food Services, Environmental Services, and Valet Parking. She will also be responsible for representing DUH as the liaison to Engineering & Operations, Transportation & Parking, Security, and FPDC.

Next, with the departure of Carey Unger as Service Line Vice President for Neurosciences and Behavioral Health at the end of this week (March 15), Unger’s system responsibilities will transition temporarily to Jill Engel, Vice President for Heart & Vascular Services for DUHS. Jill will serve in that role for the next 3-4 months while a sustainable long-term plan is determined.

Congratulations to Kristie and Jill on their expanded roles within DUHS!


Nursing Leaders Attend Specialty Hiring Event

On Wednesday, March 6, several Duke Heart leaders for our Stepdown Units attended the DUHS RN Specialty Hiring Event at Cameron Stadium. They had the opportunity to meet with over 30 potential candidates and establish shadow/interview experiences. They are hoping this will yield new Heart team members!






CME Update

Registration is now open for two Duke Heart symposia. Our 9th Annual Duke Sports Cardiology Symposium will take place on April 12 and the Duke Heart Failure Symposium, will take place on May 4. Links also available below under ‘upcoming events’.


Support Frazier-Mills, Duke Health’s 2024 AHA Woman of Impact!

Please join us in supporting electrophysiologist Camille Frazier-Mills, MD, one of the Triangle American Heart Association’s Women of Impact in her campaign to raise

Camille Frazier-Mills

funds to support Go Red for Women.

Frazier-Mills is representing Duke Health as a Woman of Impact in the 2024 campaign and we want to help her reach her campaign goal. By donating, each of us can support her campaign and help ensure more women have equitable access to cardiovascular care and better representation in critically needed medical research.

** Check out Camille Frazier-Mills’ campaign page and please donate by April 4. **

Every year across the country, a select group of individuals are nominated to be a part of Woman of Impact because of their passion and drive to make a difference. This 9-week blind competition is relentlessly focused on women’s heart health. The campaign launched on National Wear Red Day (Feb. 2) and closes on April 4. During this time, the nominees work to build campaign plans, recruit Impact teams, and inspire their networks to support the American Heart Association’s lifesaving mission.

At the end of the campaign, this special group of changemakers will be celebrated for the overall impact they have on the AHA’s mission and the Triangle community. The nominee who makes the greatest impact and raises the most funds locally will be named a local 2024 Woman of Impact Winner.

Additionally, the nominee who makes the greatest impact nationwide will be named the American Heart Association 2024 National Woman of Impact Winner.

Let’s help her reach and exceed her goal – let’s help her WIN! Go, Camille!


Please Vote in USNWR Best Hospitals for Cardiology & Heart Surgery

USNWR voting for Best Hospitals by specialty is now open in Doximity. If you are board-certified in the U.S. and have claimed your Doximity profile already, please log into your account by March 27 to complete the brief survey: submit your nominations.

New to Doximity? Find and register your profile to vote. Just go to Doximity’s login page, scroll to the bottom and click on “find your profile” – find yours and claim it/register. You can participate in the survey as long as you register on Doximity prior to the survey closing on March 27.

The survey allows you to list up to five hospitals as Best Hospital in the specialty in which you are board-certified. Your ballot counts even if you vote only for one hospital.

As with primaries and national elections, every vote is important!


Upcoming Events & Opportunities

  • March 10-16 is National Pulmonary Rehab Week & Patient Safety Awareness Week!
  • March is National Nutrition Month
  • USNWR Best Hospitals Voting is open (through March 27). Please check your Doximity account and vote!


Cardiology Grand Rounds

March 12: Arrhythmias in Myocardial Infarction: Beyond the Substrate with Ching Zhu, MD. 5 p.m., DN 2002 or via Zoom.

March 19: Beyond the Bump: Navigating the Interplay of Cardiovascular Health and Obstetrics in the Modern Era with Sarah Snow, MD. 5 p.m., DN 2002 or via Zoom.

March 26: New Direction for CABG: Women and Robots with Brittany Zwischenberger, MD. 5 p.m., DN 2002 or via Zoom.

All Duke Cardiology Grand Rounds recordings are housed on Warpwire. To access recordings please visit:

NET ID and password required. Enjoy!


CD Fellows Core Curriculum Conference

March 13: Journal Club with Joseph Lerman. Noon. DMP 2W96 (in-person only).

March 15: Antiplatelet Therapy with James Tcheng. Noon, Zoom only.

Upcoming CME Symposia

April 12: Duke Sports Cardiology & Sudden Death in Athletes

May 4: Duke Heart Failure Symposium

For any questions you might have about either event, please reach out to Christy Darnell.

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 tracey.koepke@duke.edu. 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:

February 28 — Duke University Medical Center

Cardiovascular Business

Early feasibility study for implantable heart failure monitor moves forward

March 3 — Payal Kohli


If You Want to Lower Your Heart Attack Risk, Cardiologists Say You Should Do This One Thing Every Day

March 4 — Michael Pencina

Becker’s Health IT

Health system leaders join Microsoft-backed nonprofit

March 4 — Stephen Greene

HCP Live

Cardiology Month in Review: February 2024

March 4 — Michael Pencina

Healthcare Innovation

CHAI Names CEO, Directors, Advisory Boards

March 5 — William Kraus


Even Short Bursts Of Exercise Can Reduce Americans’ Risk Of Disease And Death, Study Says

March 5 — Duke University Hospital

NC Medical Society

Duke, UNC Hospitals Ranked in Top 100 in Nation

March 6 — Marat Fudim and Richard Krasuski

Mass Device

Gradient begins pulmonary artery denervation trial in the U.S.

March 6 — Marat Fudim


Bodyport Presents Preliminary Analysis of SCALE-HF 1 Study on Remote Heart Failure Monitoring at Technology and Heart Failure Therapeutics (THT) Conference

March 6 — Marat Fudim

EP Lab Digest

Heart Failure Monitoring Technology Doubles Sensitivity for Predicting Events While Minimizing False Alerts Versus Standard of Care

March 6 — Marat Fudim and Richard Krasuski

Endovascular Today

Gradient Begins PreVail-PH2 Early Feasibility Study of Pulmonary Artery Denervation System

March 6 — DCRI & RACE-CARS

The Lexington Dispatch

Inspired by friend’s near-death experience, Davidson County man preaches CPR readiness

March 6 — Duke Health

Drug Discovery & Development

Anosmia to amyloidosis: nference’s AI is decoding healthcare data at scale

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