38 episodes

Imperfect Heart is a podcast designed for, hosted by and recorded with those affected by or involved with the care and support for those with the birth defect of a Myocardial Bridge. Interviews with healthcare professionals, support professionals and those navigating their way through the often challenging process of diagnosis and treatment are the focus of the content. It’s their stories that are meant to inform, educate and even entertain in an effort to insure hope for the listener that what they are experiencing is real, that they are not alone and that there is hope for relief from the varied symptoms of a Myocardial Bridge.



The host, Jeff Holden, has his own story to tell from symptom to diagnosis to treatment thus giving him insight and empathy as well as experience in the process of advocating for the patient. The program also seeks to make the healthcare industry more aware of the real symptoms of Myocardial Bridges with an aim to eliminate the gaslighting that is so prevalent around this defect and directly address the reality that Myocardial Bridges may be responsible for many more deaths from sudden cardiac arrest than previously thought. Early diagnosis and treatment could not only improve but may actually save lives when properly applied. More information can be found on the podcast website, www.myimperfectheart.com.

Imperfect Heart Jeff Holden

    • Health & Fitness
    • 5.0 • 6 Ratings

Imperfect Heart is a podcast designed for, hosted by and recorded with those affected by or involved with the care and support for those with the birth defect of a Myocardial Bridge. Interviews with healthcare professionals, support professionals and those navigating their way through the often challenging process of diagnosis and treatment are the focus of the content. It’s their stories that are meant to inform, educate and even entertain in an effort to insure hope for the listener that what they are experiencing is real, that they are not alone and that there is hope for relief from the varied symptoms of a Myocardial Bridge.



The host, Jeff Holden, has his own story to tell from symptom to diagnosis to treatment thus giving him insight and empathy as well as experience in the process of advocating for the patient. The program also seeks to make the healthcare industry more aware of the real symptoms of Myocardial Bridges with an aim to eliminate the gaslighting that is so prevalent around this defect and directly address the reality that Myocardial Bridges may be responsible for many more deaths from sudden cardiac arrest than previously thought. Early diagnosis and treatment could not only improve but may actually save lives when properly applied. More information can be found on the podcast website, www.myimperfectheart.com.

    Imperfect Heart Info-pod: Inaugural Myocardial Bridge In-Person Meetup Sept 14, 2024. Connect, Share, Support.

    Imperfect Heart Info-pod: Inaugural Myocardial Bridge In-Person Meetup Sept 14, 2024. Connect, Share, Support.

    This is pretty cool! I'm using our platform to share a bit of great info in real time as it unfolds. If you subscribe or follow the podcast, you'll get these occasional Imperfect Heart Info-pods to make announcements on things that affect us in some way or another. You'll see them as well on YouTube. Here's what this Info-pod is all about.



    Imagine the power of sharing your journey with someone who truly gets it. That's the magic we're bringing to life with this first ever Myocardial Bridge Meetup! Scheduled for September 14th, 2024, in downtown Sacramento, California, this event is more than just a gathering—it's a chance for our community to connect, support, and uplift one another. Whether you're navigating the complexities of your condition or celebrating post-surgery milestones, you'll find a safe space to ask candid questions, share your experiences, and forge lasting bonds.



    I'm also hoping for a virtual discussion with one of doctors we've previously interviewed, adding even more value to our meetup. If you’re within driving distance, downtown Sacramento offers a convenient and accessible location with plenty of nearby accommodations. Remember, space is limited, so register quickly for the benefit of knowing our attendance. For any questions, head to our website (My Imperfect Heart Website) and click the contact tab. Let's make this inaugural Myocardial Bridge Meetup an unforgettable experience for our community, and continue to change the way the medical world views our condition. Cheers to our imperfect hearts!



    Meet others in similar situations as yourself and have candid conversations about the condition

    Hear stories from those who have been where you are

    Hear from spouses and significant others who have experienced a loved on with a bridge

    Meet others who are active on the Facebook page that may have become trusted sources



    Thanks and I'm looking forward to meeting you all!



    Here are all the registration details: Imperfect Heart Coronary Kingdom Meetup

    • 2 min
    Episode 33: Dr. Danny Ramzy's Vision for the Future of Robotic Cardiac Surgery and Unroofing Myocardial Bridges.

    Episode 33: Dr. Danny Ramzy's Vision for the Future of Robotic Cardiac Surgery and Unroofing Myocardial Bridges.

    Can personal experiences with heart disease shape the future of heart surgery? Join me as I sit down with Dr. Danny Ramzy, a groundbreaking minimally invasive heart surgeon, to unravel his inspiring journey in medicine. Driven by his family's history with heart disease, Dr. Ramzy transitioned from classical training to becoming a pioneer in robotic heart surgery. He recounts his first encounter with robotic techniques during his fellowship and how these innovations have revolutionized procedures like unroofing myocardial bridges, offering patients faster recoveries with minimal life disruption.



    What makes robotic surgery a game-changer in treating myocardial bridges? The conversation shines a spotlight on the meticulous techniques Dr. Ramsey employs to free arteries from muscle encasement and the complexities involved with smaller arteries. We delve into the choice between traditional sternotomy and robotic approaches, underscoring the pivotal role of surgical experience. Dr. Ramsey also introduces us to the latest advancements in robotic surgery, including haptic feedback, which enhances precision and safety, making these procedures more effective than ever.



    How do we differentiate between benign intramyocardial vessels and pathological myocardial bridges? Our discussion delves into the essential diagnostic protocols and personalized treatments necessary for optimal patient outcomes. Dr. Ramsey clarifies the significant benefits of surgical unroofing for symptomatic patients and highlights the ongoing advancements at McGovern Medical School at the University of Texas Health in Houston. We'll wrap the episode by acknowledging the vibrant myocardial bridge community and Dr. Ramsey's unwavering dedication to improving patient care and outcomes.



    To reach Dr. Ramzy's office you can call 713-486-6690 and schedule an appointment for a consultation.



    Episode Highlight Timestamps



    (03:21 - 05:18) Robot-Assisted Unroofing for Myocardial Bridges

    (13:10 - 14:06) Endovascular Unroofing of Arteries

    (18:11 - 21:55) Myocardial Bridge Unroofing Importance

    (25:44 - 26:48) Global Advancements in Robotic Surgery

    (28:39 - 29:53) Consultation Process for Robotic Surgery



    Episode Chapter Summaries



    (00:00) Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery Innovations. Dr. Ramzy's journey to becoming a minimally invasive heart surgeon, influenced by family experiences and technology, and his use of robotics for unroofing myocardial bridges.



    (12:11) Robotic vs. Minimally Invasive Surgery. Unroofing myocardial bridges in LAD artery, considering surgical approach and advancements in robotic surgery for precision and safety.



    (18:35) Advancements in Robotic Heart Surgery. Myocardial bridges are complex and often misunderstood, but surgical unroofing can benefit symptomatic patients.



    (29:49) Sharing Stories of Myocardial Bridge. Facebook group supports patients with myocardial bridge, emphasizing accurate diagnosis and ongoing efforts to understand and treat the condition.



     



     



     

    Episode 32: A Doctor’s Diagnostics & Research Lead a Myocardial Bridge Patient to “Unroofed” Progress.

    Episode 32: A Doctor’s Diagnostics & Research Lead a Myocardial Bridge Patient to “Unroofed” Progress.

    Could your heart be sending distress signals that traditional tests can't detect? Join me, Jeff Holden, for a revealing conversation with Dr. Samit Shah from Yale School of Medicine as he shares groundbreaking insights on the Discover INOCA research program. This multicenter study is pioneering the way we understand ischemia and non-obstructive coronary arteries (INOCA), focusing on elusive conditions like coronary microvascular dysfunction, myocardial bridging, and coronary vasospasm. Collaborating with institutions such as Stanford and Columbia University, this research aims to establish standardized protocols for better patient outcomes through advanced diagnostic techniques.



    And meet David Tretter, a patient whose life took a dramatic turn due to severe heart arrhythmias. His journey from a terrifying heart arrhytmia that led to a game-changing diagnosis at Yale is nothing short of inspiring. Dr. Shaw and his team meticulously differentiated David's myocardial bridge from his arrhythmias, using comprehensive tests like angiograms and provocative testing. Their collaborative effort underscores the importance of precision in diagnosis, ultimately leading to effective treatment and a significant improvement in David's quality of life.



    The road to recovery doesn't end with diagnosis. Discover the transformative power of cardiac rehabilitation through David's experience at Lawrence Memorial. Dr. Shaw emphasizes the critical role of cardiac rehab in helping patients regain physical fitness and confidence. The episode also ventures into the broader challenges of diagnosing persistent cardiac symptoms, advocating for continued innovation and collaboration in heart health research. This episode demonstrates the importance of patient-doctor relationships and the ongoing quest for better heart health solutions from today's medical care teams.



    To learn more about the clinical trials of Discover INOCA visit: https://medicine.yale.edu/ycci/trial/the-discover-inoca-prospective-multi-center-registry/



    Episode Highlights



    (00:08 - 00:48) Discover INOCA Research Program

    (06:26 - 07:47) Identifying Myocardial Bridge

    (11:10 - 12:24) Treatment Plan for Myocardial Bridge Symptoms

    (15:48 - 17:43) Recovery Success After Surgery

    (21:12 - 22:34) Advantages of CAT Scans in Diagnosis

    (27:59 - 29:15) The Challenge of Diagnosing Myocardial Bridges



    Chapter Summaries



    (00:00) Discover INOCA Research Program Overview



    Discover INOCA is a collaborative research program investigating INOCA, using advanced diagnostic techniques to improve patient outcomes.



    (06:31) Heart Condition Diagnosis and Treatment



    David's journey from severe heart arrhythmias to identifying and treating a myocardial bridge, with a focus on the diagnostic process and collaborative effort among medical professionals.



    (16:26) Cardiac Recovery and Rehabilitation



    Regaining physical fitness post-cardiac surgery through structured cardiac rehab and identifying and treating coronary bridges.



    (20:18) Chronic Symptoms and Diagnostic Challenges



    Evolving technology and comprehensive workups aid in diagnosing and treating persistent cardiac symptoms, as seen in David's case.



    (27:59) Patient-Doctor Relationship and Heart Research



    Myocardial bridges, patient frustration, advanced testing, groundbreaking research, patient-doctor communication, and collaboration for better outcomes.



     

    • 33 min
    Episode 31: What to Say to Your Primary Care Physician When You're Experiencing Chest Pain.

    Episode 31: What to Say to Your Primary Care Physician When You're Experiencing Chest Pain.

    Have you ever wondered why some heart conditions slip through the cracks? I do. And myocardial bridges are one of those conditions. Join me as I speak with my very own primary care physician, Dr. Thomas Hopkins, more affectionately known as Dr. Tom. He joins us to unpack the mysteries of diagnosing chest pain in the hopes we can catch a symptomatic myocardial bridge sooner rather than later. With a journey that spans from aspiring heart surgeon to passionate primary care physician, Dr. Tom brings a unique perspective on cardiac health. This episode uncovers the critical importance of educating both patients and healthcare providers about myocardial bridges—a frequently misdianosed but potentially fatal condition. Dr. Tom walks us through a comprehensive approach to diagnosing chest pain, ensuring that no deadly condition is overlooked.



    From initial assessments to advanced diagnostic tests, Dr. Tom explains the systematic pathway to accurately diagnose cardiac conditions from the perspective of a primary care physician or general practitioner. We delve into the limitations of primary care settings and the indispensable role of timely referrals to cardiologists. The urgency of quick action is highlighted, especially when conditions like myocardial bridging are suspected. This episode is a must-listen for anyone eager to understand the nuances of cardiac diagnostics and the vital need for vigilance in recognizing heart issues, especially if you or a loved one are experiencing chest pain that makes no sense.



    Effective communication between patients and their physicians is paramount for accurate diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Tom emphasizes the importance of patients sharing their symptoms, risk factors, and behaviors openly with their doctors. He provides key questions to guide these conversations, ensuring timely interventions and specialist referrals. This episode not only highlights the clinical significance of myocardial bridges but also underscores the value of expressing gratitude for medical support. By fostering mutual respect and teamwork in the patient-doctor relationship, the greater the likelihood the condition can be diagnosed in a timely and proper manner to get the proper treatment before something more serious occurs. It's both Dr. Tom's and you know my belief, that there are many out there who are going to experience only one symptom from a myocardial bridge and that's sudden cardiac arrest. Starting the conversation correctly from the beginning may just help save lives and improve lifestyles sooner for those getting proper diagnosis.



    Here's the website link to:  Dr. Thomas Hopkins



    To learn more about myocardial bridges visit: My Imperfect Heart



    To see our guests you can watch Imperfect Heart on YouTube



    Episode Highlights(00:05 - 01:05) Medical Journey Towards Cardiac Surgery

    (09:55 - 11:15) Diagnostic Tests for Chest Pain

    (14:54 - 16:05) Patient-Doctor Interaction for Proper Diagnosis

    (23:39 - 24:57) Addressing Patient Honesty and Care Coordination

    (30:34 - 31:49) Connecting Patients With Myocardial Bridge





    Chapter Summaries



    (00:00) Diagnosing Chest Pain in Patients



    This chapter welcomes Dr. Thomas Hopkins, also known as Dr. Tom, to discuss his transition from aspiring heart surgeon to primary care physician and his ongoing interest in cardiac health. We explore the topic of myocardial bridges—a condition not widely known even among medical professionals—and emphasize the importance of educating both patients and healthcare providers. Dr. Tom outlines the systematic approach his practice takes when a patient presents with chest pain, emphasizing the need to consider a broad range of potential causes, from cardiac issues to gastrointestinal and mental health factors. The goal is to ensure nothing potentially deadly is overlooked,

    • 39 min
    Episode 30: You Have a Myocardial Bridge. Could You Die? Stanford’s Dr. Ingela Schnittger Explains.

    Episode 30: You Have a Myocardial Bridge. Could You Die? Stanford’s Dr. Ingela Schnittger Explains.

    Can a legal case become a catalyst for groundbreaking medical research? In this episode, I sit down with Dr. Ingela Schnittger, a trailblazer in the field of cardiology, as she recounts how a tragic courtroom moment ignited her passion and led her to a pivotal collaborative effort at Stanford. Dr. Schnittger explains the complexities of myocardial bridges and the vital role a multidisciplinary team plays in accurately diagnosing and treating this often-misunderstood condition. You'll gain insights into the significance of combining expertise from cardiologists, radiologists, and surgeons to tackle the intricacies of this cardiac anomaly.



    We'll touch on the latest technology in myocardial bridge treatment and the meticulous surgical interventions pioneered at Stanford. Dr. Schnittger shares the precision required in preoperative evaluations and the importance of thorough diagnosis to ensure successful surgical outcomes. We delve into the potential widespread prevalence of myocardial bridges and their significant impact on cardiac events, emphasizing the need for expert care and comprehensive preoperative mapping for proper diagnosis. Dr. Schnittger's discussion underscores the critical role of experience and dedication within the surgical team at Stanford, highlighting their exceptional track record over the past 10+ years.



    We'll close with the patient-centric process of cardiac rehabilitation and recovery, crucial for post-surgery. Dr. Schnittger offers valuable guidance on structured rehab programs, medication management, and the importance of a gradual return to normal activities. We also touch on the importance of family medical history in diagnosing and managing heart conditions. Concluding with a heartfelt exchange of gratitude and appreciation, this episode underscores the profound impact of Dr. Schnittger's work on countless lives. If you've just been diagnosed, or believe you need to get properly diagnosed to identify or eliminate the possibility of a myocardial bridge, this conversation will give you everything you need to take the next steps with your cardiologist. If you know of someone suffering from undiagnosed chest pain, angina or heart attack like symptoms, please share this episode with them. If you have a doctor or worse yet, cardiologist that is uncertain of the impact of a myocardial bridge, or possibly doesn't accept them as symptomatic at all, be certain to share this episode with them. Share all the episodes with them.  As always, stay positive and grateful. There's hope for what it is you're going through.



    For more information, visit www.myimperfectheart.com



    Chapter Summaries



    (00:00) Understanding Myocardial Bridges and Treatment



    Dr. Schnittger discusses his journey into myocardial bridges, the importance of a multidisciplinary team, and advancements in surgical intervention.



    (18:42) Advancements in Myocardial Bridge Treatment



    Myocardial bridge treatment at Stanford involves precise preoperative evaluations and a dedicated surgical team with a successful track record.



    (34:32) Myocardial Bridge Diagnosis and Treatment



    Stepwise approach to treating myocardial bridges with medications, surgery if needed, and advancements in non-invasive diagnostic tools.



    (50:21) Cardiac Rehab and Recovery Guidance



    Cardiac rehab for endothelial dysfunction and myocardial bridges, importance of structured programs and gradual recovery, managing professional stress, and proactive family medical history.



    (57:25) Gratitude for Benefactor and Speaker



    Host expresses gratitude for Dr. Schnittger's positive impact, while Dr. Schnittger regrets not meeting in Stanford but is happy to see the host thriving.



     



     

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Episode 29: You’re Having Symptoms of a Heart Issue. The Story of Myocardial Bridges You Should Know.

    Episode 29: You’re Having Symptoms of a Heart Issue. The Story of Myocardial Bridges You Should Know.

    In this episode, I attempt to reveal some lesser known truths of myocardial bridges as I unravel the complexity of heart-related symptoms that often go misdiagnosed. You'll gain a deeper understanding of the disparity between the prevalence of this condition and the surprisingly low number of patients who receive accurate diagnoses. Did you know one-in-four of us is likely to have a myocardial bridge? How many people may actually be dying as a result of an undiagnosed bridge? Amidst the statistics that paint heart disease as the leading cause of death, I'll shed some light on the silent battles many face with undiagnosed chest pain, shortness of breath, and the emotional toll of not knowing. This episode is meant to outline and guide those affected or suffering from chest pain or shortness of breath or chronic fatigue towards recognizing the proper signs and advocating for themselves in a healthcare landscape that can sometimes overlook such crucial ailments.



    With options ranging from traditional sternotomy to state-of-the-art robotic surgery for "unroofing" a myocardial bridge, guests have shared their personal anecdotes of navigating these decisions and the life-changing moments post-surgery. With myself included, we're all testament to the fact that the surgery does benefit us and it needs to be more accessible for those in need. Let the "cycle to diagnosis" support you in your journey giving you a list of action items that should lead you to your resolution of the condition or at the very least a proper diagnosis of your condition. I have no doubt proper diagnosis of a myocardial bridge saves lives through the ripple effect of heightened recognition and medical progress.

    • 15 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
6 Ratings

6 Ratings

inspire78 ,

A necessary examination of an often misunderstood defect

Thank you to Jeff for giving myocardial bridging the attention it needs.

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