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Celebrating Donate Life Month and the Need for Organ Donation

According to the Organ Procurement and Transplant Network, the number of organ transplants performed in 2020 was 39,034. That number decreased from 2019 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and strict mandates placed on many surgical procedures for a large part of the year, including transplants. With a renewed sense of hope and a gradual return to normalcy for 2021, organ donation and the number of life-saving transplants performed should rebound. At CTVS, we are committed to sharing the importance of organ donation now more than ever, and especially during April as it is National Donate Life Month. National Donate Life [...]

April 13th, 2021|News|

Why Limb Preservation Matters

Facing a limb amputation can be scary and overwhelming.  Many times, these amputations are the result of preventable health conditions, including vascular disease, and specifically diabetes.  However, without proper medical management, we will continue to see hundreds of amputations performed each day in the United States. If the thought of living without a leg isn't bad enough, unfortunately the long-term outcomes for people who have an amputation are very poor. Over half of people with diabetes who have a lower extremity amputation will require amputation of the other leg within 2 to 3 years. Even more concerning, almost half of [...]

April 13th, 2021|News|

What’s the link between a vascular surgeon and spinal fusion surgery?

Vascular surgeons are experts in the diseases and conditions of arteries and veins and all major blood vessels of the body except those of the heart and brain.  Our expertise is in mobilizing, removing, repairing, and replacing these vessels.  CTVS has been providing vascular services in Central Texas for more than 60 years. Vascular surgeons are also asked to assist many other surgical specialists with their operations because of the proximity or association of the major blood vessels with the organs our colleagues are operating on. Those specialists often include urologists, gynecologists, surgical oncologists, general surgeons, head and neck surgeons, [...]

April 5th, 2021|News|

Your Most Common Vascular Questions Answered

CTVS has been the “go-to” expert for vascular disease in Central Texas for more than 60 years. Vascular disease and vascular health are often unfamiliar to some people. What part of the body or system do they refer to? Is it the same as cardiovascular health? What type of doctor treats vascular conditions? The vascular system, also known as the circulatory system, is an intricate web of blood vessels, veins, and arteries that carry blood to your heart and transport it throughout the body. (The cardiovascular system includes the heart muscle and its immediately surrounding veins and vessels.) Your vascular [...]

March 11th, 2021|News|

Why one heart transplant patient wants you to listen to your body

February is American Heart Month, and here is a story that is close to ours about a very special patient who is paying his good fortune forward. Dr. Jeff Zapalac (a retired orthodontist) started experiencing very mild symptoms that seemed to be affecting his heart, including difficulty breathing and exercising. While he initially attributed that to his older age, he also had a gut feeling that something else might be wrong. His cardiologist diagnosed him with a condition called amyloidosis, or “stiff heart syndrome.” It is a potentially deadly form of heart disease that occurs when amyloid (or abnormal) proteins [...]

February 24th, 2021|News|

Lung Damage Complications in COVID-19 Survivors

As we near the year mark of the COVID-19 battle, doctors and surgeons are still learning about the virus and the potential long-term health concerns COVID survivors may endure. We know people with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms varying from mild to severe, and now physicians are reporting some patients’ lungs look worse than the lungs of people who have been smoking for years. Thoracic surgeon Rachel Medbery, M.D. recently shared what she is seeing firsthand when treating COVID survivors with lung damage on Fox 7 Austin and The List. What lung complications are COVID survivors experiencing? [...]

February 8th, 2021|News|

Heart Transplants, Heart Treatments and Why CTVS Loves American Heart Month

February is the month we celebrate Valentine's Day along with the symbolic image of the heart and all the love it represents. It is also American Heart Month. At CTVS, we celebrate hearts every second of every day, and every month of the year. Taking care of them has been our passion for more than half a century. CTVS is a pioneer in heart health care since performing the first heart transplant surgery in Central Texas back in 1986. CTVS is still the only practice in Central Texas providing this life-saving procedure to adults 18+ years of age, and we [...]

February 8th, 2021|News|

CTVS Transplant Patient Shares Story of Hope

If you’re still thinking of a meaningful New Year’s resolution to adopt -- one that could save lives -- consider becoming an organ donor. This is the heartfelt plea of one of our remarkable patients here at CTVS. "One person has the ability to be an organ donor and to save up to eight lives," says CTVS heart transplant recipient Kristen Patton who recently shared her story with KEYE-TV and the Austin American-Statesman. Patton received a donor heart four years ago after suffering two heart attacks and being diagnosed with Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection following the birth of her child. [...]

January 25th, 2021|News|

CTVS Surgeons Named Austin Monthly Top Doctors

18 Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgeons (CTVS) physicians have been named Austin's Top Doctor 2021 by Austin Monthly magazine. Please join us in congratulation our "Top Doctors" in Travis, Williamson and Hays Counties. Cardiothoracic Surgery  Stephen Dewan, M.D. Mark Felger, M.D. William Kessler, M.D. Faraz Kerendi, M.D. Eric Hoenicke, M.D. W. Chance Conner, M.D. Robert Neely, M.D. Brendan Dewan, M.D. Vascular Surgery Phillip Church, M.D. John Politz, M.D. Jeffrey Jobe, M.D. Stephen Settle, M.D. Joe Wells III, M.D. Scott Seidel, M.D. Jeffrey Apple, M.D. Mazin Foteh, M.D. Ryan Turley, M.D. Thoracic Surgery Rachel Medbery, M.D. Top Doctors are selected by Castle Connolly Medical [...]

January 14th, 2021|News|

Here’s to Your Heart Health in 2021

BestLife recently shared a survey revealing the most popular New Year’s resolutions for 2021. The first one was to exercise more (and lose weight). A commitment to working out is a resolution that we at CTVS can whole “heartedly” get behind, because exercise and its countless benefits to the heart are near and dear to us. Regular exercise is one of the greatest things you can do to prevent a heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular disease while also positively impacting your overall health and well-being. Some of the heart healthy benefits of exercise include: Strengthening the heart muscle and improving [...]

January 6th, 2021|News|