Heart Matters – November/December 2022

Cardiovascular Division Celebrates 75th Anniversary

On November 11th, current and former faculty and staff of the Cardiovascular Division came together to celebrate the division’s 75th anniversary. An all-day event with talks and panels from many faculty and fellows — past and present –took place on the School of Medicine campus at the Eric P. Newman Education Center. Staff at clinical and administrative locations celebrated with lunch, and if unable to attend the program could view via livestream.

Commemorating 75 years of innovation and leadership in cardiovascular medicine, the program of speakers wove a rich history of our division’s successes and changes over the years.

A panel with current and former fellows included our two current chief fellows, Drs. Adam Lick and Kristen Wong – as well as returning fellows that have become leaders around the country such as Dr. Elizabeth Ofili, now the Chief Medical Officer at Morehouse and Dr. Minnow Walsh who served as president of the American College of Cardiology.

Throughout the day, panels focused on different subspecialties, and the past present and future of research and practice in the division. Presenters each contributed insights looking back at past achievements and challenges, and highlighted our division’s unique strengths looking into the future.

Drs. Lou Lange, Dan Kelly, and Michael Cain, all former division chiefs, returned and gave insight into their time at Washington University School of Medicine, and how it has shaped their own careers as well as impacted cardiology across the world. Former chief and current faculty member Dr. Douglas Mann gave the keynote speech, “Here’s Looking at Euclid: 75 years of Cardiovascular Excellence”.

The online program, including a commemorative slideshow, can be viewed here.

Way to Shine!

“I’d like to nominate Karen Sneed, Liz Mortka, and Craig Hunt for a Way to Shine.  Today, they were all involved with a patient who required immediate cardiac risk assessment documentation in order to proceed with an urgent surgical procedure.  They worked together seamlessly to ensure that the requested documentation was obtained and put patient care front and center.  I’m so grateful for all their hard work on behalf of the patient!”

Other Way to Shine’s for this month were Heidi Craddock, Elizabeth Bolhafner, Kaye McNeill, Mindy Wood-Bates, and Brad Boyer.

If you catch someone in the act of shining, contact or send an email to bolhafner@wustl.edu.

Dr. Prabhu Honored at AHA Scientific Sessions


Division Chief Dr. Sumanth Prabhu was honored as the 2022 George E. Brown Memorial Lecturer at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions, held November 5-7th in Chicago.

Dr. Prabhu’s lecture was entitled “Alterations of the Immune System in Heart Failure”. The George E. Brown Memorial Lecture is presented by an honoree each year, selected by the Council on Basic Cardiovascular Sciences leadership in the AHA. Dr. Prabhu is recognized as a leader in the research of inflammation and the immune system in heart failure.

Dr. Linda Peterson Inducted as President of Society for Heart and Vascular Metabolism


Cardiovascular Division faculty member Linda Peterson, MD, was inducted as president of the Society for Heart and Vascular Metabolism last month at their 19th annual Scientific Sessions, hosted in Seoul, South Korea.The Society was founded in 2000, with the intent of providing a forum for the free exchange of ideas by a group of investigators with a special interest in the multiple roles of intermediary metabolism in the cardiovascular system. An important aim of the Society is to foster interactions between young investigators and senior scientists in an informal setting.

This year’s meeting focused “on metabolic modulation of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Invited speakers will highlight our current understanding of metabolic signaling pathways in blood vessels and heart, that can be targeted for the treatment of metabolic cardiovascular diseases.”, according to the SHVM website.

Dr. Peterson is a professor of Medicine and Radiology in the cardiovascular division, and a member of the Washington University School of Medicine’s Diabetes Research Center.

Cardiovascular Faculty Elected as Members of American Society for Clinical Investigation

New members of the American Society for Clinical Investigation for this year include Washington University School of Medicine Cardiovascular Division faculty Dr. Karen Joynt-Maddox, Dr. Stacey Rentschler, and Dr. Rajan Sah.

The American Society for Clinical Investigation seeks to support the scientific efforts, educational needs, and clinical aspirations of physician-scientists to improve the health of all people.

Dr. Kates Appears on KSDK News

Dr. Andy Kates was featured on KSDK’s Today in St. Louis program on November 14th. In a new segment called “Monitoring Men’s Health”, Dr. Kates was interviewed about high blood pressure in men, and increasing awareness of the importance of screening and prevention measures.

The segment also included tips on a diet that promotes healthy blood pressure, and discussion of risk factors for high blood pressure.

The American Society for Clinical Investigation seeks to support the scientific efforts, educational needs, and clinical aspirations of physician-scientists to improve the health of all people.

ACC, AHA Issue Aortic Disease Guideline,
Dr. Alan Braverman on Writing Committee

The American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHH) on Wednesday published updated guidelines on the diagnosis and management of aortic disease, focusing on surgical intervention considerations, consistent imaging practices, genetic and familial screenings, and the importance of a multidisciplinary aortic team.

Dr. Alan Braverman of the Washington University School of Medicine’s cardiovascular division served on the writing committee for the updated guidelines.

“We have utilized multidisciplinary teams in the approach to acute and chronic diseases of the aorta at Washington University in St. Louis and Barnes-Jewish Hospital for several years.  The Aortic Disease Guidelines will provide a useful framework for cardiologists, vascular and cardiac surgeons, radiologists and other physicians and practitioners involved in the evaluation and management of individuals with aortic disease”, says Dr. Braverman.

“Highlights in the Aortic Disease Guidelines include emphasis on standard approaches to imaging and measuring the aorta, the importance of multidisciplinary teams and shared decision-making, updates in the medical, endovascular and surgical management of abdominal and thoracic aortic aneurysms, and importantly, the expanded role of genetic testing and family screening for individuals and families with thoracic aortic disease.  New sections on pregnancy and family planning for individuals with thoracic aortic disease are included.”

Dr. Sam Lindner Receives Knowlton Incentive for Excellence Award

Former chief cardiovascular division fellow and current structural fellow Dr. Sam Lindner was a recipient of the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Knowlton Incentive for Excellence Award in November.

The award is presented annually to recognize and support medical residents who exemplify a compassionate spirit combined with outstanding knowledge and skill. In the past 35 years, more than 200 awards have been given to fellows who have completed internal medicine residency programs, embody the “Knowlton spirit” of care, and are likely to practice in the St. Louis area.

Dean Gives State of the School Address

Dean Perlmutter gave his annual State of the School address in November, where he spoke about the School of Medicine’s progress over the past year as well as the school’s future. In case you missed it, you can view a recording here.

Flavor Beyond Salt

Emma Greenhill, MS, RD, LDN

Schedules are busier than ever, and we are often racing through our days trying to accomplish everything. This fast-paced lifestyle leads to quick, on-the-go meals and not realizing what or how much we are eating. One strategy to combat this problem is to practice mindful eating. By eating mindfully, we focus our attention on the act of eating. Eating mindfully can increase your awareness of not only physical hunger and fullness cues, but also the triggers that make you crave food even when you are not hungry.

Below are tips that can be incorporated into mealtimes to build a more mindful eating approach:

Slow down

Think about the pace at which you eat. Do you finish meals in under 10 minutes? Do you often still feel hungry afterwards? This is because it takes approximately 20 minutes to feel satisfied. As we eating and our stomach expands, hormones are triggered and rush to the brain to indicate fullness. When we eat at a slower pace, we tend to eat smaller portions and enjoy the act of eating more. Eating slower means taking the time to savor the flavor. To help you slow down, try setting your fork down between bites, or eating with your non-dominant hand.

Avoid extreme hunger

It’s hard to eat slowly when you’re very hungry. To prevent extreme hunger, plan to eat 3 well-balanced meals plus healthy snacks each day.

Be present

Listen to your body’s physical hunger and fullness cues. Aren’t sure if you are full or not? Stop eating and take a sip of water. Engage in the conversation. Take your time. And even hours after the meal ends focus on how different foods make you feel. Did the meal give you energy?

Ask why

It’s important to fuel your body with food when you feel hungry. But do you find yourself eating, or not eating, when you are hungry, sad, stressed or bored? Asking “why” why you eat, or don’t eat, can help mend your relationship with food.

Eliminate distractions

Eating while distracted can lead to overeating or mindlessly snacking. Putting distractions away, e.g. turning off the TV, will keep you focused on your bodies hunger and fullness cues.

Three Sisters Soup

Three Sisters Soup
Three Sisters Soup

This tasty variation on a classic Native American recipe was created by the American Heart Association. The name of the recipe is referring to the corn, beans and squash (in this case pumpkin) that make up the soup. Perfect for cooler evenings!


  • 6 cups unsalted vegetable stock
  • 16 oz. can, no salt added corn or hominy, drained, rinsed
  • 16 oz. can, no salt added kidney beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 15 oz. can 100% pumpkin (Tip: Don’t get pumpkin pie filling! It’ll be too sweet)
  • 5 fresh sage leaves, OR ½ tsp. dried sage
  • ½ tsp. curry powder


  1. Bring vegetable stock to a slow boil.
  2. Add corn/hominy, beans, onion, and celery. Boil for 10 minutes.
  3. Add sage leaves, curry and pumpkin and simmer on medium-low heat for 20 minutes.

Recipe Tips

Flavor Tip: Feel free to play around with adding more spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, oregano, or cumin (depending on what you like!).

Keep it healthy: No Salt Added or Unsalted canned goods are the best options! But even low-sodium varieties are good options.

Recipe courtesy of heart.org

Do you have BJC Cigna? Remember that you have annual coverage to meet with me, Emma Greenhill, a Heart Care Institute dietitian. Call 314-996-8165 for more insurance information or to schedule an appointment.

Meet Your Colleague


Stephani Sykes
Billing/Scheduling Assoc II

Fun Facts About StephaniHow long in the division: 5 and a half years

Family: I am married with three kids. Two girls, 14 and 6 years old, and a son that’s 10 years old.

Hobby: I love to travel.

Favorite Food: Italian food.

Nickname: Steph and Sophie

Bucket List: One of the things on my bucket list that I would like to do is travel to Bali and have a tiger encounter while there.

New Guidance on COVID-19 Testing for Employees

Occupational Health is now accepting positive home antigen test results for COVID-19, with no requirement for further testing. WashU Medicine and BJC HealthCare employees who develop symptoms associated with COVID-19 and have a positive home antigen test should call the COVID-19 Exposure/Illness Hotline at 314-362-5056 to report the result and receive guidance on safe return to work. It is not necessary to send proof of a positive home test to Occupational Health. However, employees may wish to date and initial their home test and take a picture of the test alongside their badge for their own records or in the event this may be needed at a later date. Please continue to stay at home if you are sick, regardless of test results.

Depending on evolving regional trends in respiratory virus disease (e.g., COVID-19, influenza), WashU Medicine and BJC HealthCare will continue to collaborate together and adapt strategies to ensure safe return to work.

Flu Vaccination Submission Due December 16

Fight Flu at WashU bandaid

Flu season has arrived early with cases rising quickly in our region. To help protect our community, we encourage Washington University faculty, staff and trainees to get the flu vaccine prior to gathering together with friends and family for the upcoming holidays. Walk-ins are available from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Occupational Health’s clinic Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays through December 15th(CAM, suite 5A). Register here.

Any Washington University faculty, staff or trainee who works on-site or in a hybrid position at a School of Medicine location is required to receive this year’s influenza vaccination and upload proof in ReadySet by Dec. 16 per university policy. All exemption requests for religious or medical reasons are due by Dec. 2. Please review the flu policy and exemption documents online.

IT Scam of the Month: Assistant Job Posting

The Office of Information Security has observed a trend where criminals send fraudulent job requests in hopes that victims will text a phone number with their personal information.

If you see a message like the one below, please do not interact with the sender, phone number, or follow any special instructions. Simply report the email using the Phish Alert Button (PAB) in your Outlook interface. It is always best to be cautious and report anything remotely suspicious. Our team will analyze all submissions and return them to you if they are determined to be safe. Below, we dissect this phishing attempt to reveal its many red flags.

  1. The email comes from outside of our domain.
  2. Dennis Zuelke is not in WashU’s directory. (You can find our directory on https://one.wustl.edu/ by searching for “Directory & WUSTL Mobile app”)
  3. It features oddly placed links.
  4. The office name is vague. The Dean of what?
  5. (978) is a Massachusetts area code. This phone number does not match the one listed in WashU’s directory for Kevin Collins.
  6. Text messaging is an unusual method of contact for this kind of job posting. Most student positions are posted on WashU’s career management platform, Handshake. Visit https://students.wustl.edu/handshake-students/ for details about Handshake.
  7. They ask for personal information.
  8. There is a typo in the signature.
  9. Professor of what? The title does not match the one for Kevin Collins in WashU’s directory.

Tips for Traveling and Shopping Safely This Holiday Season

With Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday around the corner, it can be tempting to buy discounted items on impulse. Before getting caught up in a “while supplies last” frenzy, remember that scammers capitalize on hasty decisions involving payment information. According to the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Network data, online shopping scams were the second most common fraud category reported by consumers in 2021. Follow these online shopping tips to get what you pay for this holiday season.

  1. Shop only on known, legitimate websites and shopping platforms.
  2. Look for https: in the address bar; its absence indicates a scam.
  3. Avoid making purchases on social media platforms.
  4. Use trusted payment methods. Use a credit card or an electronic payment service such as PayPal as an intermediate step in the transaction for an added layer of protection. Wire transfers and cash apps such as Venmo don’t offer buyers protection. Avoid paying with a debit card for the same reason. Distrust sellers who only accept cryptocurrency.
  5. Don’t click on links or attachments from unknown sources.
  6. Don’t provide personal information for an unexpected delivery.

Follow the Cardiovascular Division on Twitter!

Check out our division account, @WashUCardiology! We will be sharing division accomplishments, announcements, news, events, and more. If you have a story about the cardiovascular division that you think deserves a social media spotlight, email bolhafner@wustl.edu.

Photo Directories

Washington University School of Medicine Cardiovascular Division

Follow Us on Twitter: @WashUCardiology