- January 2014 -
Dr. Panjrath Discovers New Way to Predict Prognosis in Patients with Heart Failure



Researchers at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS) and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine have identified a new method to determine whether a patient's heart will fail, which in the future may help physicians better treat patients and tailor therapeutic interventions. Gurusher Panjrath, MD, director of Heart Failure and Mechanical Support Program and assistant professor of medicine at GW, and his colleagues measured energy metabolism in 58 heart failure patients using magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS). This new method of testing energy metabolism in the heart proved to be a significant predictor of clinical outcomes, independent of a patient's symptoms, race, or strength of the heart.


The paper: "Metabolic Rates of ATP Transfer Through Creatine Kinase (CK Flux) Predict Clinical Heart Failure Events and Death," was published in Science Translational Medicine. Dr. Panjrath's co-investigators were Paul Bottomley, Ph.D., professor and director of the Division of Magnetic Resonance Research and Robert Weiss, M.D., professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 


GW Heart & Vascular Institute and GW Hospital join to Reduce Heart Failure Hospital Readmissions

The national readmission rate of heart failure (HF) patients is twenty-three percent per month. The GW Hospital, GW Heart & Vascular Institute, and GW MFA heart failure experts, have created a new strategy to keep patients at home and improve quality of life. This innovative program launching in 2014, will train and deploy community health workers to monitor HF patients at home after hospital discharge and communicate back to the HF team.  Drs. Panjrath, Katz, and GW heart failure nurse practitioner Linda Bostrom, are collaborating with the Institute for Public Health Innovation based in DC, and Grand-Aides patient support program. In addition, Drs. Panjrath and Katz have developed a mobile phone application for patients with HF to compliment community health workers activities.


Cardiology Fellow Collaborates with Vascular Surgeons to Optimize Patient Care

Bernard Ashby, MD, chief cardiology fellow, and Richard Neville, MD, chief of vascular surgery at GW, presented their research: "The Impact of Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)on the Acute Post Operative Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Lower Extremity Revascularization" at the Southern Association for Vascular Surgery (SAVS) 38th Annual Meeting held January 15-18, 2014 in Palm Beach, Florida. Anton Sidawy, MD, Lewis B. Saltz Chair of Surgery and Bao-Ngoc Nguyen, MD, assistant professor of surgery, co-authored the study, which found that a history of CHF does not impact the success of acute lower leg bypass artery graft surgery. CHF, however, does increase the complication rate of peri-operative pneumonia, pulmonary embolism, prolonged intubation, re-intubation, and mortality. Therefore, lower extremity intervention in patients with a history of CHF should incorporate an individualized approach to optimize success of the revascularization while minimizing medical comorbidities.