Public Release:  Minneapolis Cardiology Fellow named an ACCF Young Investigators Awards finalist

Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - March 31, 2014 - Minneapolis Heart Institute Chief Cardiology Fellow Ankur Kalra, MD has been named as a finalist for the 2014 ACCF Young Investigators Awards. Kalra's research, funded by the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation (MHIF), supports the ongoing quest to better identify, with noninvasive tools, which heart attack survivors are at greatest risk for sudden cardiac death, and therefore may benefit from ICD (implantable cardioverter defibrillator) therapy. Kalra will present his research at the American College of Cardiology (ACC) meeting in Washington, DC on March 31, 2014.

When a person suffers a heart attack, a scar is left on the heart tissue, and the risk for sudden death due to a dangerously fast heart beat (ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation) increases. Kalra's research focused on studying that scar with specialized imaging technology (contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging, or CMR), and determining if the size of the scar could be used to predict future outcomes, including stroke, another heart attack, or death.

The MHIF researchers reviewed 332 patients who were admitted to the hospital with acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) and underwent CMR prior to discharge. They compared outcomes among three patient groups: 1) those who were implanted with an ICD within 40 days of the heart attack, 2) those who were implanted with an ICD > 40 days after the heart attack, and 3) those who did not receive an ICD. There was no significant difference in the size of the scar left by the heart attack, and in clinical outcomes at 30 days and 1 year between groups 1 and 2. "Our findings are limited by a small sample size," states

Kalra, "But the research serves as a first step in assessing whether and how CMR, a noninvasive test, may be used to assess risk for post-MI patients."

Kalra is one of five finalists selected for the ACCF Young Investigators Awards in the Clinical Investigations, Congenital Heart Disease and Cardiac Surgery category. The competition encourages and recognizes young scientific investigators of promise, upon whom progress in the field of cardiology is dependent. A first place, second place, and three honorable mention awardees will be recognized during the American College of Cardiology's Annual Convocation on March 31, 2014.


About the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation

The Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation is dedicated to improving people's lives through the highest quality cardiovascular research and education.

  • Scientific Innovation and Research -- Publishing more than 120 peer-reviewed studies each year, MHIF is a recognized research leader in the broadest range of cardiovascular medicine. Each year, cardiologists and hospitals around the world adopt MHIF protocols to save lives and improve patient care.

  • Education and Outreach -- Research shows that modifying specific health behaviors can significantly reduce the risk of developing heart disease. Through community programs, screenings and presentations, MHIF educates people of all walks of life about heart health. The goal of the Foundation's community outreach is to increase personal awareness of risk factors and provide the tools necessary to help people pursue heart- healthy lifestyles.

About the Minneapolis Heart Institute®

The Minneapolis Heart Institute® is recognized internationally as one of the world's leading providers of heart and vascular care. This state-of-the-art facility combines the finest in personalized patient care with sophisticated technology in a unique, family-oriented environment. The Institute's programs, a number of which are conducted in conjunction with Abbott Northwestern Hospital, address the full range of heart and vascular health needs: prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation.

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