About me, my practice, and electrophysiology.
Whats on this page:
Professionalism Taken to Heart
CHV includes many of the best cardiologists and sub-specialist cardiologists around. We have experts in Imaging, Peripheral Vascular Disease, Structural Heart Disease, as well as Coronary Intervention and Cardiac Arrhythmia treatment.
John Altman MD Heather Call PA Takeshi Kataoka MD Lawrence Lazar MD
Sameer Mehta MD Bridget O'Brien MD Michael Ptasnik MD Christopher Stees DO
Vijay Subbarao MD J Thomas Svinarich MD Michael Wahl MD
Our offices are located in Denver, Lakewood, and Westminster 303-595-2727
Carnegie Mellon University
I attended Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh to study electrical engineering. This directly influenced my subsequent interest in cardiac arrhythmias and electrical problems of the heart. This background also influences my problem solving approach to patient care.
Ohio State University College of Medicine.
Yes I am, and always will be, a Buckeye, even after living in Colorado for over 35 years.
Fitzsimmons Army Medical Center.
Army scholarships for college and medical school brought me to Colorado in 1977 to train at Fitzsimmons in Internal Medicine and Cardiology. That is why Denver is now home.
Letterman Army Medical Center.
Both coronary intervention and electrophysiology were new fields when I went to San Francisco. My training there gave me the background for the practice I have continued in Denver.
What is Electrophysiology?
Electrophysiology is a subspecialty of cardiology that focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of abnormal heart rhythms. This includes many conditions that can result in slow heart rates, abnormally fast heart rates, or cardiac arrest.
Electrophysiologists are expert in the use of medications, implanted devices such as pacemakers and defibrillators, and ablation procedures.
Over the course of my career, knowledge about the diagnosis and treatment of cardiac arrhythmias has grown tremendously.
The implantable defibrillator is the cornerstone of therapy to reduce the risk of death from cardiac arrest. Biventricular pacing is used to strengthen weakened hearts. New medications are available. Ablation for heart arrhythmias is now common. Ablation and other treatments for atrial fibrillation have become remarkably advanced.
These developments are miracles that have prolonged and improved the quality of life for many who in the past had to "live with" these debilitating or life threatening conditions.
Treatment for AFib is improving rapidly.
The progress we have seen in treating Atrial Fibrillation over the last 10 years has been truly remarkable, particularly in regard to ablation. There is still a very long way to go however until we can have safe, effective, well tolerated, and permanent therapy for all patients. Successful AFib treatment balances medications, ablations, and lifestyle changes to control the problem over a lifetime.
The Full Range of Treatment.
There isn't a one size fits all approach to treating AFib. The manifestations of AFib are variable and patients respond differently to treatments at different STAGES of the condition. Best results to improve the quality of life in patients with AFib occur when the FULL RANGE of treatments are considered.
Cryoballoon Pulmonary Vein Isolation.
Since the invention of ablation for AFib it has been felt to be important to find a way to replace the focal RF catheter with a balloon based tool. The Cryoballoon is the result of those efforts. It had been used extensively used in Europe and when it became available here it became the cornerstone of my approach for AFib ablation. It is safe and effective because it makes circular lesions around the pulmonary veins and is less prone to damage structures adjacent to the heart.
I am a Cardiologist & Sub-specialist in Cardiac Electrophysiology and AFib treatment. I have been in practice in Denver Colorado since 1986.
My grandparents immigrated from Croatia (Yugoslavia) and
I grew up in Columbus Ohio moving to Denver in 1977. We have 3 children and 2 grandchildren.
My main interest outside of medicine is art, I am an oil painter.
I have traveled extensively with the group Project Open Hearts to perform cardiac procedures in developing countries, particularly in Central Asia, but also in Poland and Palestine.
Clinical research is a very important part of our practice. We participate in a large number of clinical trials many of which are related to pacemakers, defibrillators, and medications including anticoagulation strategies for atrial fibrillation. The STOP-AF trial is a very important area of research that looks closely at the outcomes of Cryoballoon therapy for AFib.
Because of our early adoption and extensive experience with the Cryoballoon, I have been fortunate to be an instructor for new users of this technology.
Remaining on the cutting edge is important to me and all the physicians in our practice. We pride ourselves on adopting the latest technologies when the benefit to our patients is clear.
Board Certified in Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology.
Board certification is the fundamental qualification for any specialist. The ABIM American Board of Medical Examiners provides the standards and testing for Board Certifications. I have maintained Board Certification in Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology since the beginning of certification in 1992.
Heart Rhythm Society.
I am a member of HRS which is the Professional Society for Electrophysiology Specialists. It is an international non-profit organization that promotes education and advocacy for cardiac arrhythmia professionals and patients. The Society was founded in 1979 and counted 5,100 members from over 70 countries as of January 2009.
The Heart Rhythm Society mission is "To improve the care of patients by advancing research, education and optimal health care policies and standards".
Fellow of the Heart Rhythm Society FHRS.
I am a Fellow of the Heart Rhythm Society (FHRS), a status that recognizes members for their advanced training, certification, and commitment to the research and treatment of heart rhythm disorders.
Colorado Heart & Vascular.
Research and Teaching.
Heart Rhythm Society Fellow.