How the Clinic Works
The heart specialists at Memorial’s heart valve clinic can educate you about symptoms to watch for, create a treatment plan that could delay or avoid the need for surgery and also maintain regular follow-ups to determine the right timing if surgery is needed.
A treatment plan could include:
- Lifestyle changes (diet, exercise and quitting smoking with the help of Memorial’s Health & Lifestyle Center)
- Additional testing
- Minimally invasive surgery
- Open-heart surgery
- A combination of the above
Normally this process might require multiple trips to various doctors including a primary care provider, cardiologist and cardiac surgeon. Rather than requiring patients to make multiple trips to multiple physicians to develop the proper care plan, the heart valve clinic brings the cardiologist and cardiothoracic surgeon together on the same day in one place to meet one-on-one with each other and subsequently with the patient to discuss the final recommendations for the individualized care plan.
Patients can ask questions and raise concerns during the consultation. Additionally, the heart specialists can discuss with you some state-of-the-art treatment options that may not be available locally, as well as provide guidance and referrals. The clinic is a more efficient, convenient and effective patient-care approach that should lead to better management of acute and long-term heart valve problems and ultimately better patient outcomes.
Memorial Hospital of South Bend, working in conjunction with Memorial Advanced Cardiovascular Institute and Memorial Cardiothoracic Surgery, established this state-of-the-art initiative in collaboration with top area cardiologists and cardiac surgeons. Treatment of complex heart disease is best approached by having this specialized multidisciplinary team working together with you. Not every patient needs medications or surgery, and it may be as simple as taking an aspirin a day, education and close follow-up. With this state-of-the-art clinic, we can provide patients with the best quality care here at home and guide them to a healthier life.