Banner Health North Colorado Medical Center: Cardiologists Making a Difference in Research

Diabetes and Cardiovascular

The Journal Advocate reports on Banner Health and why their cardiologists Lin Dong and Michael Kim participate in clinical research.  Providing top-of-the-line health care to patients is Banner Health’s top priority. This means staying up to date with the newest technologies to give the best care possible to their patients or innovating new therapies, care techniques or devices through research studies. This research not only benefits the patients of the community, it also allows the clinician to learn about new ways of providing health care, creating a healthier and stronger community.

Why do our cardiologists participate in research?

Clinicians at Banner Health participate in research to find the next greatest tool or treatment for their patients. Without research and clinical trials, very few (if any) of the life-saving therapies that clinicians offer their patients today would be available. When determining what research will be conducted, the clinicians decide on if a question they have can be answered through a study that will truly impact the patient.

Dr. Lin Dong Banner Health

Research studies take a variety of forms. Some are looking at safety and effectiveness of medications, others are testing new procedures and devices. Regardless the type, researchers are looking to monitor patients to understand the outcome and submit data in hopes of medical advancements. It’s important to note that in all research, participation is completely voluntary. The care team will thoroughly explain the process including consent forms, how long the study will last and the risks and benefits from participation.

What recent research has been conducted?

There have been quite a few recent studies that have taken place at North Colorado Medical Center (NCMC). One of which was investigating the landmark PARTNER trial. This study ultimately led to the approval of the first transcatheter heart valve replacement, a minimally invasive procedure to treat severe aortic stenosis, a narrowing of the aortic valve opening.

Other recent research includes device trials in the areas of mitral regurgitation, left atrial appendage closure, congestive heart failure and investigational medications to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension. Currently at NCMC, clinicians are enrolling patients in the clinical trial that will evaluate a new device used to reduce stroke risks in patient with atrial fibrillation.

What happens when the research is complete?

All the studies are supported by a company, whether that is a drug or device company. They will collect the data from the study from all the participating clinicians and health care facilities and publish a paper to various outlets, such as the American Journal of Medicine, to promote the discoveries of the research. If the study is successful and beneficial, it will be sent to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval to use the device or drug for clinical use.

How does this benefit the community?

The research allows members of the community to potentially have therapies and technologies available to them that otherwise would not be readily accessible. There are many different treatments available to patients and, with research, there are devices and techniques that can be used in a clinical setting due to the fact that they were involved in the study.

Lead Research/Investigators

Dr. Lin Dong

Michael Kim