If you’re very lucky, you haven’t yet become familiar with words like electrophysiology, interventional and vascular cardiology, venous insufficiency, or mesenteric ischemia. And, if your luck holds, you may never need to worry about the implications of words like these. But sadly, the statistics are not in your favor. Nearly half of all adults in the United States have some type of cardiovascular disease, according to the American Heart Association’s Heart and Stroke Statistics, 2019 Update. Clearly, at some point in our lives, most of us will need to pronounce, define, and research the words mentioned above and more. Most of us will need to find a skilled physician who is familiar not only with the words themselves but with the diagnosis and treatment attached to them. So, in the interest of preparedness, we’d like to introduce you to the caring professionals at First Coast Heart & Vascular Center.
First Coast Heart and Vascular opened in February 2013 with a handful of doctors and about 20 staff members. In just over six years, the medical team has expanded to serve their patients on the First Coast and Ancient City. The population growth in those communities drove the decision to enhance several aspects of the practice. The original physicians felt that any and every addition to the practice meet two simple criteria: allow patients expedited access to expert care, and all of the providers must be been vigorously vetted to deliver that care in the most compassionate manner. Their mission is to provide the broadest offerings of cardiovascular medicine, which includes endovascular, peripheral, interventional, and electrophysiological services. The team knew it could not comprehensively help the community if there were delays or deficiencies in unique specialists, so they expanded the group to 14 physicians and each has an area of expertise in specific fields of cardiology. This allows the doctors to see patients in a timely manner and the specialists to consult internally when necessary to cover almost all possible needs of their patients. By seeing complex patients on a routine basis with vast physician support, the patients receive a connected continuum of care that, until now, has been available only in larger metropolitan areas. First Coast Heart prides itself on being able to provide such care, while still offering the personal touch that its patients have come to expect.
In general, most patients are referred through a primary care physician, but they often see patients who have come to the office after being referred by a friend or family member. They also provide consultation and advanced cardiovascular care in the hospital. When a patient is discharged from the hospital, they continue to see and follow them in their offices. They always try to set the patients up with the physician that has a specialty within the field of Cardiovascular Medicine that is most likely to be able to help them. Many patients need a general cardiovascular specialist that can comprehensively and systematically evaluate the patient and optimize their medical care, while coordinating the need for further subspecialty advice or procedures. For instance, if you have an electrical problem of your heart or require an evaluation for a pacemaker, defibrillator, or ablation, they will schedule an appointment to see the electrophysiology team. When patients have emergencies or serious blockages that require intervention such as balloons, stents, vascular repair, or vein issues, they will ultimately get to see one of the interventional cardiologists that perform these advanced procedures at their own outpatient catheterization laboratory or at Flagler Hospital. Ultimately, it is their goal to streamline care and get the patient to the most appropriate physician earlier so there are no delays or redundant office visits.
General Cardiovascular Medicine Specialists include Dr. Caracciolo, Dr. Vedre, Dr. Hayes, Dr. Koren, Dr. Grech, Dr. Kaveti and Dr. Martin. In Interventional cardiology, they have Dr. Crisco, Dr. Jones, Dr. Singh and Dr. Edwards. The Electrophysiologists are Dr. Pubbi, Dr. Sanghvi and Dr. Mandalakas. Their offices accommodate patients on the First Coast in Jacksonville, Fleming Island, World Golf Village, St. Augustine, and Palm Coast.
Instead of listing the dizzying number of complex conditions and procedures that they diagnosis and treat, simply put, they have the full scope to comprehensively take care of almost all cardiovascular patients locally right here on the First Coast and in the local hospital. They are proud to be able to make it easy for you to get this care and live your life healthfully. If you find yourself having to become familiar with electrophysiology, or interventional and vascular cardiology, you can feel comfortable knowing that First Coast Heart and Vascular is right here in your hometown and will take the best care of your cardiovascular needs.
First Coast Heart & Vascular Center has a Palm Coast office located at 14 Office Park Drive, Suite 1. They have St. Augustine locations at 100 Whetstone Place, Suite 102; 300 Health Park Blvd, Suite 1000; 70 Turin Terrace, Suite 210.
Learn more about them by calling (904) 342-8300 or by visiting www.firstcoastheart.com. Photography by Kate Gardiner.