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June 2021 Newsletter

graphic reads "One IU CV Newsletter"
We strive to be One, diverse academic health enterprise where people come to receive the highest quality heart and vascular care in their community while also enabling relentless innovation that fuels better health for Indiana and beyond. Read on to learn about recent advances in realizing this vision.

Top News

Krannert CV Research Center Director Recruitment Update

Following a national search, Rohan Dharmakumar, PhD, from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and the University of California Los Angeles, has been selected as the inaugural Director of the new Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center (KCVRC) within the Indiana University Health/Indiana University School of Medicine Cardiovascular Institute. He is a translational scientist, broadly trained in cardiovascular physiology and biophysics, and focused on addressing critical needs in cardiovascular health and disease. The cornerstones of his translational research are to discover new biomarkers, enable noninvasive detection of these biomarkers and precisely design imaging-guided personalized therapies. Seminal contributions to date have included visualization of myocardial oxygenation changes, inflammatory mechanisms accelerating risk of heart failure post-myocardial infarction, and novel markers of ventricular arrhythmia in patients with prior MI. The KCVRC has, as its charge, the interdisciplinary advancement in understanding, preventing, and treating cardiovascular diseases, translating basic discoveries to favorably impact the cardiovascular health of the people of Indiana and beyond. High impact programmatic teams and a pipeline of future talent will be established around strong pillars and cross-cutting themes in cardiovascular science. Stay tuned for more on Dr. Dharmakumar upon his arrival in Indianapolis later this year. Your engagement is appreciated in realizing a shared vision for us to be One, diverse academic health enterprise where people come to receive the highest quality heart and vascular care in their community while also enabling relentless innovation that fuels better health for Indiana and beyond.

  Rohan Dharmakumar, PhD

Pictured: Rohan Dharmakumar, PhD

IU Health Hospitals Receive 2021 Chest Pain-MI Registry Performance Achievement Awards

Congratulations to the 7 IU Health Hospitals on their 2021 Chest Pain-MI Registry Performance Achievement Awards from the American College of Cardiology, demonstrating their commitment to providing quality care to patients with heart attacks.

Platinum Chest Pain MI Registry Award

Platinum Performance Award
• IU Health Arnett Hospital
• IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital
• IU Health Bloomington Hospital
• IU Health Methodist Hospital
• IU Health Saxony Hospital
• IU Health West Hospital


Gold Chest Pain MI Registry Award

Gold Performance Award
• IU Health North Hospital



Top Performer in Likelihood to Recommend: IU Health Ball CV Surgery Q1 Specialty Care

Cheers to our IU Health Ball Cardiovascular Surgery team for achieving a Likelihood To Recommend score of 100.00 (100% of patients would recommend!) during Q1, evidence of their dedication to exceptional patient and family experiences.

IU Health Ball CV Surgery Team
Pictured from left to right: Kellie Sheets, Ashley Chalfant, Nicole Miller, Dr. Glenn Carlos, Miranda Patterson
Not Pictured: Dr. John Kuhn

Welcome to our Team

Stephen Cook, MD, FACC joined IU School of Medicine, Division of Cardiology in February 2021 as a Professor of Clinical Medicine and Director of the Indiana University Health Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program. Dr. Cook comes to IU Health from Helen DeVos Children's Hospital in Grand Rapids, where he served as the director of the ACHD program. He is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, serving on the ACC's Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Dr. Cook is board certified in pediatric cardiology, adult cardiovascular medicine and adult congenital heart disease (ACHD). Dr. Cook earned his medical degree from Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA. He completed a combined internal medicine and pediatric residency at Albert Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA followed by combined pediatric and adult cardiology fellowships at Nationwide Children's Hospital and The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.

Stephen Cook, MD

Balaji Tamarappoo, MD, PhD, joined IU Health in June 2021 as a general cardiologist. He completed his post graduate training in Internal Medicine Residency and his Cardiovascular Medicine Fellowship at Oregon Health and Sciences University, Portland, OR in July 2008. This was followed by two years of training in Nuclear CT and cardiac MRI at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA. He was staff physician at Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH from 2010-2016 and Cedars Sinai Medical Center from 2016-2021. Dr. Tamarappoo is board certified in Cardiology, Echocardiography, Nuclear Cardiology and Cardiovascular Computed Tomography. His research studies have included CT, MR, PET and SPECT imaging modalities and his NHLBI funded research study uses coronary CTA to characterize plaque remodeling in response to intensive medical therapy in women with nonobstructive coronary artery disease.

Balaji Tamarappoo, MD, PhD

 Patient Care Updates


Vein Center opens at Methodist Professional Center 2

IUH Methodist Vein Clinic

Patients seeking comprehensive vein care treatment have the option of visiting a new vein center located in the third-floor vascular surgery outpatient office at IU Health Methodist Professional Medical Center 2. Over the last year, administrative space was converted into a clinical environment to accommodate surgeons and vascular lab technicians who will perform interventions and treatment in the expanded outpatient vein center.

Personalized Medicine for Patients with Coronary Heart Disease

Clopidogrel is a commonly prescribed antiplatelet medication for patients with coronary artery disease. A common genetic variant present in 25-30% of the population has been shown to reduce the effectiveness of clopidogrel and increase the risk of recurrent heart attacks. Pharmacogenetic testing can identify carriers of the variant CYP2C19 gene, and effective alternate medications can be prescribed in place of clopidogrel. Routine pharmacogenetic testing for this genetic variant is now being offered to all patients who receive coronary stent procedures at IU Health cardiac catheterization laboratories as part of the Personalized Medicine Initiative.



Honors and Recognitions

Dr. Douglas Zipes has been awarded the JO Ritchey Society Award for his enduring commitments to IU School of Medicine.

Dr. Vatsal Bajpai was awarded the Fellow of the Year by the Internal Medicine Housestaff for his outstanding teaching.

Dr. Onyedika Ilonze has been accepted into the Program to Increase Diversity in Cardiovascular Health Related Research (PRIDE-CVD) at SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University for Summer 2021.

Congratulations to Dr. Roopa Rao and Dr. Stephen Cook for their selection in the IUSM Department of Medicine's Business of Medicine Leadership Program. This program includes training in business acumen, leadership skills, lean, and strategic thinking with equity and inclusion.


The recent study, published in JACC by Dr. Julie Clary and colleagues, analyzed data from over 700,000 stent procedures to develop a prediction tool that can be used by physicians at the bedside to help determine which patients are at a higher risk of mortality. They found that patients needing urgent procedures, those with unstable blood pressures and heart rates, and those who were not awake following a cardiac arrest were at a higher risk.

It takes teamwork: In September, the Big 10 mandated extensive cardiac evaluation for all varsity athletes who tested positive for COVID-19. Not only did #OneIUCV provide excellent and timely care for these athletes, the results of the evaluations from around the Big 10 were published in JAMA Cardiology. We learned that 2% of the athletes have evidence of myocarditis, and that symptoms were not always predictive of the finding of myocarditis on cardiac MRI. This information will guide return to play protocols for the fall semester at colleges around the country.

Check out more publications in recent months from across OneIUCV
Vascular Surgery
Cardiac Surgery

Milestone Work Anniversaries

Celebrating 45 years

• Dr. Eric Williams - June 30th

Celebrating 15 years

• Dr. Yazid Fadl - July 10th
• Dr. Michael Byers - July 1st

Celebrating 10 years

• Dr. Noel Dasgupta - July 1st

In Memory of Our Extended OneIUCV Family


Leon Stein, MD

Dr. Stein was a native of Argentina and served as an Associate Professor of the IU School of Medicine. He worked primarily at Wishard (now Eskenazi) Hospital and the VA Hospital. He participated in many of the original trials investigating the application of vasodilator therapy in heart failure. He was 90 years old.

Jeffrey Riesmeyer, MD

Jeffrey Riesmeyer, MDDr. Riesmeyer grew up in Crown Point, Indiana, and trained in Arizona and Texas. He came to Methodist Hospital from fellowship training at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. He practiced interventional cardiology for 11 years before leaving for Eli Lilly, where he rose to the rank of Distinguished Medical Fellow. He was 65 years old.



Do you have a story that reflects the strength of our statewide system for cardiovascular care?
Please email so we can share with the team!

The views expressed in this content represent the perspective and opinions of the author and may or may not represent the position of Indiana University School of Medicine.
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Cardiovascular Institute

Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death worldwide—and in Indiana. Cardiovascular diseases claim more lives each year than the next three leading causes combined. To meet this challenge, the Cardiovascular Institute brings together highly skilled caregivers, researchers, and educators into close collaboration to improve the health of patients and communities across Indiana.