South Florida Hospital News
Saturday May 8, 2021
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February 2021 - Volume 17 - Issue 8
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Profiles in Cardiology

Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital

Laura D’Addese, MD, FAAP
 
Dr. Laura D’Addese, a pediatric cardiologist specializing in heart failure and transplant medicine, vividly remembers a childhood experience with her mother, a teacher, which sparked an interest in medicine. “One of my mom’s students had been hit by a car and we visited him in the ICU. He was hooked up to all sorts of machines and when we got back to our car my mom was overcome with emotion.
 
I remember having a lot of questions. Why do kids get sick? How does the body heal? What were his parents feeling? It made me want to help others in that situation.”
 
That desire ultimately led to a career in cardiology, caring for pediatric patients with acute and chronic heart failure, as well as those who have undergone heart transplantation or require mechanical circulatory support.
 
“In this area of medicine, we assist patients and parents for what can be years at a time,” said the fellowship-trained D’Addese. “It’s a long journey. We become part of their families and get to watch our patients grow. I really enjoy that.”
 
Svetlana Shugh, MD      

A trio of numbers recently filled Dr. Svetlana Shugh with pride.
 
“Our pediatric heart transplant program just celebrated its 10th anniversary. We’ve transplanted 67 patients so far and have a 100% survival rate one and three years after surgery.”
 
The outcome exceeds national benchmarks for transplant success and Shugh, a pediatric cardiologist that specializes in treating patients with heart failure, cardiomyopathy, and those who need or have had a transplant, says the credit belongs, in part, to the collaborative nature of the program. “Ours is a multi-disciplinary approach that includes sub-specialty experts every step of what can be a long journey for patients. We also involve families in the care plan, and their dedication to the process is a big part of the success we’re having.”
 
Shugh’s patients range from infants to young adults, with relationships between doctor, patient, and families lasting years. Some of her greatest satisfaction comes from celebrating milestones, like when a child is able to attend school after being critically ill.
 
Memorial Cardiac & Vascular Institute
 
Omosalewa Adewale, MD
 
Dr. Omosalewa Adewale has practiced medicine on three continents, in stops as varied as Lagos, Nigeria, the UK, and El Paso, Texas. Now in South Florida, she says people everywhere are basically the same. “Everyone has families, jobs, fears, and aspirations in life, it’s only their environment and experiences that make them seem different. At the heart of every human being is a person who wants to be loved.”
 
The heart has always held a particular interest for Adewale, especially as it relates to imaging, a sub-specialty that can offer insights throughout the continuum of cardiac disease. Her global medical experiences have taught her caring is a key to a physician’s success and a smile goes a long way.
 
“It’s my job to make a difference for patients, whether that’s calming fears, providing support, or perspective about a diagnosis,” said Adewale, the medical director of cardiac imaging at Memorial’s Cardiac & Vascular Institute. “It’s an awesome responsibility, and a privilege too.”
                             
Ralph Levy, MD
 
After nearly 30 years practicing medicine in South Florida, Dr. Ralph Levy is still passionate about “going to work.” That’s a trait that has served him well as he’s overseen the growth and development of Memorial’s Cardiac & Vascular Institute (MCVI), which now features the highest surgical volume in Broward County.
 
As chief of adult cardiac medical services, Levy helped implement the integrated, multi-disciplinary approach at what has become a truly comprehensive cardiovascular institute. “Nothing is more exciting to me than normalizing a patient’s life, where they no longer have to spend all their time thinking about medical issues.”
 
In addition to his duties at MCVI, Levy is also active in clinical cardiac research, exploring the consequences of cancer treatments on the heart. He is also associate professor at Florida International University’s Wertheim College of Medicine and works with residents in Memorial’s Graduate Medical Education program.
 
Memorial Healthcare System
 
R. Allen Ligon Jr., MD
 
Dr. Allen Ligon cares for both pediatric and adult patients with congenital heart disease, focused on improving their quality of life through procedures performed in the cardiac cath lab. From premature babies requiring PDA closure to senior citizens in need of valve replacements, Ligon and his team utilize the latest innovations in minimally-invasive, non-surgical technology to correct potentially fatal issues. “We had a patient come to us on the verge of being put on life-support who was ultimately discharged in less than 48 hours with a new lease on life,” said Ligon of the percutaneous valve therapy patient who had a defective heart valve replaced without requiring open-heart surgery.
 
An interventional cardiologist, Ligon is fascinated by how science can be applied to positively impact life and move healthcare forward. Transcatheter technology, in the right patient-candidate, can now replace all four valves of the heart outside the operating room.
 
“I’m fortunate to be able to apply my skill set to help others. Caring for the cardiac community feels like a calling to me.”
 
Jupiter Medical Center
 
Arthur Katz, MD
 
Arthur Katz, M.D., Jupiter Medical Center specialist in advanced cardiothoracic surgery, is the award-winning institution’s Medical Director, Cardiac Surgery. Dr. Katz leads a multidisciplinary team dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of complex surgeries. 
He has performed more than 2,000 “off-pump” coronary artery bypass grafts and is considered a national authority on the procedure. He also specializes in heart valve surgeries, reconstructions, ablations, tumor excisions, and repair of other heart defects. 
 
Dr. Katz is highly regarded in the field, with more than 25 years of experience, and is board certified and fellowship trained in cardiothoracic surgery. He graduated with honors from New York Medical College and completed his residency in general surgery at NYU Medical Center. Dr. Katz is also recognized as a Top Doctor by Palm Beach Illustrated Magazine. 
 
Matthew Kolek, MD, MSC 
 
Matthew Kolek, M.D., MSC, specialist in treatment of complex cardiac arrhythmias, is on Jupiter Medical Center’s team of experienced electrophysiologists. Board certified in cardiology and clinical cardiac electrophysiology, Dr. Kolek performed Jupiter Medical Center’s first WATCHMAN™ implant procedure in January. As an experienced specialist in the only FDA-approved device proven to reduce stroke risk due to non-valvular atrial fibrillation, Dr. Kolek ushers in this new service for the award-winning hospital. 
 
Dr. Kolek’s areas of specialty include treatment of complex cardiac arrhythmias; left atrial appendage closings; laser lead extraction; and a broad range of cardiac device therapies such as the WATCHMAN™ implant and Micra lead-less pacemaker procedures.
 
Dr. Kolek graduated medical school from the University of Utah School of Medicine, completed his residency at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, and earned fellowships also at Vanderbilt in cardiovascular diseases and cardiac electrophysiology.
 
Broward Health Medical Center
 
Ahmed F. Osman, MD
 
Ahmed F. Osman, M.D., is the medical director of the Cardiac Electrophysiology Lab at Broward Health Medical Center. He is also the associate program director of the cardiology fellowship at Broward Health and has more than 20 years of experience. Dr. Osman is board certified in cardiology and electrophysiology.
 
Dr. Osman has been instrumental in bringing the latest technology and clinical trials to Broward Health Medical Center. In 2020, Broward Health Medical Center was the first hospital to offer patients the next generation Watchman FLX Left Atrial Appendage Closure (LAAC) Implant.
 
Dr. Osamn is a principal investigator in several national and international multi-center clinical studies. He is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, American Heart Association, the Heart Rhythm Society and European Society of Cardiology.
 
“What I love about cardiology is that with cardiac interventions you can often relieve suffering and dramatically reduce symptoms for patient in very rapid and measurable ways,” he said. “I also believe predictive, personalized and preventive therapy will soon have a major role in reducing cardiovascular disease morbidity.”
 
Dr. Osman received his medical degree from Cairo University in Cairo, Egypt, and completed his internal medicine residency at Norwalk Hospital/Yale University. Dr. Osman completed a cardiology fellowship at Ochsner Medical Foundation in New Orleans and a clinical cardiac electrophysiology fellowship at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore.
 
Yordanka Reyna, MD
 
Yordanka Reyna, M.D., is the medical director of the heart failure program at Broward Health Medical Center. She is board certified in advanced heart failure and transplant, cardiovascular disease, and internal medicine. Dr. Reyna received certification by the National Board of Echocardiography in Adult Transthoracic Plus Transesophageal Echocardiography.
 
Dr. Reyna specializes in cardiomyopathies, heart failure, cardiac transplantation, mechanical circulatory support, pulmonary hypertension, echocardiography, cardiac care of women and cardiopulmonary stress testing.
 
“I am excited that in cardiology we can now do more minimally invasive procedures that can improve patient’s lifestyle and their quality of life,” she said. “The MitraClip procedure is a perfect example of one of the latest breakthrough technologies in cardiac care which allows us to repair the mitral valve with a minimally invasive procedure.”
 
Dr. Reyna received her medical degree from Ross University School of Medicine in Dominica, West Indies. She completed her internal medicine residency and cardiology fellowship at Cleveland Clinic Florida in Weston, Florida. She did an advanced heart failure and transplant fellowship at Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Reyna is a professional member of the American College of Cardiology, Heart Failure Society of America, and The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation.
 
Holy Cross Medical Group
 
Ronald M. Gabor, MD
 
Board certified in cardiovascular medicine, Dr. Ronald M. Gabor practices cardiology with interests including valve disease and heart failure with the Holy Cross Medical Group, a multi-specialty physician employed group of more than 160 physicians providing services throughout Broward and Palm Beach counties. Dr. Gabor earned his M.D. from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx in New York and a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Biochemistry from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He completed his residency and internship in internal medicine at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a fellowship in cardiology at University of Miami-Jackson Memorial Hospital. He has been in private practice for over 21 years. In addition to English, Dr. Gabor speaks French, Hebrew, Hungarian and Yiddish.
 
Sam Sareh, MD
 
Certified in cardiovascular disease by the American Board of Internal Medicine, Dr. Sam Sareh specializes in cardiovascular disease. He is with the Holy Cross Medical Group, a multi-specialty physician employed group of more than 160 physicians providing services throughout Broward and Palm Beach counties. Dr. Sareh received his medical degree from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, and he completed his residency in internal medicine and fellowship in cardiology at the University of Illinois in Chicago. Dr. Sareh speaks both English and Spanish. 
 
 
 
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