Do no harm.
Physicians can cause harm to patients by putting unnecessary stents, by giving chemotherapy to patients without cancer, etc.
Physicians can also cause harm by not treating or treating inadequately, those at high risk for heart attack and stroke when the medical treatment is safe, effective, recommended and covered by medical insurance.
Premature heart attack and stroke can prevent people from advancing the economic ladder. Preventing heart attack and stroke has many economic benefits to patients and their families.
I am a triple board certified preventive cardiologist - Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Disease and Clinical Lipidology and the medical director of Princeton Preventive Cardiology. I feel fortunate to have been practicing long enough to acquire and hone skills needed to prevent most heart attacks, sudden cardiac deaths, heart failures, disabilities and expensive cardiac hospitalizations and procedures since 2001, in addition to treating heart disease since 1978. Please visit us at www.PrincetonPreventiveCardiology.com.
When my personal and profession journey to heart attack and stroke prevention began in 2001, I was faced with many challenges. I acquired and honed new expertise in heart attack prevention, became among the first few to become board certified in Clinical Lipidology in 2005, developed ACCEPT Clinical Management System to successfully treat 85% of high risk patients beyond the standards to halt disease progression, presented and published our performance data in 2006, created a patient mentoring program and promoted the Million Hearts Initiative in my community. I am glad to be a pioneer in advancing heart attack and stroke prevention in my own community.
We hear about "disruptive" advances in technology that benefit a large population while lowering cost, "UBER" and "AirBnB". Atherosclerosis affects a very large population in the US and worldwide and its diagnosis and treatment generate billions of healthcare dollars every month while causing premature death and disability for many. For the very large cardiovascular healthcare industry - hospitals, medical institutions, cardiologists, medical device manufacturers, atherosclerosis is the goose that lays the golden egg. Recommended, safe, effective and insurance-covered aggressive medical treatment that stops this goose presents a huge financial threat, a "disruptive" advancement in the management of cardiovascular disease.
My prediction for the near future for the large cardiovascular healthcare industry is, like it or not, change is coming. Use your American ingenuity to develop a new business model that makes it more profitable to prevent heart attacks and strokes and avoiding unnecessary hospitalizations and invasive procedures. Right now, there are not financial benefits, other than to the patients, for preventing heart attack and stroke.
Studies have showed that more rapid heart attack care with shorter door-to-ballon time did not reduce mortality and the intensive lifestyle changes (Look AHEAD Trial) did not reduce cardiovascular events in type 2 diabetes. Clearly, an ounce of evidence-based prevention is worth more than a pound of cure.