Many cardiac conditions give warning signs if you know what to look for. You know your body better than anyone, so use that awareness to stay on top of your health. Michael Ruisi, MD, joined Dr. Georg Couturier and the full-service cardiology team at Village Heart and Vein in the fall of 2023.
A board-certified general and interventional cardiologist, Dr. Ruisi specializes in minimally invasive complex transcatheter aortic valve replacements, helping repair patients’ damaged aortic valves that don’t fully open. Dr. Ruisi points out that patients can be the best advocates of their own health if they pay attention to their bodies and don’t ignore symptoms. Testing and ultrasound of the heart are routinely used to diagnose cardiac issues. Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a common condition caused by narrowing of the arteries, which reduces blood flow to the legs or arms.
Dr. Ruisi says a patient may not have symptoms unless claudication (blockage) develops. In that case, symptoms can include: Should you experience any of these symptoms, contact your cardiologist or get a referral from your primary care doctor. “We do stress tests in the office and if needed, cardiac catheterization can be done through the wrist using the transradial approach, which is much safer than going through the groin artery,” notes Dr. Ruisi, who has done 100 percent of his catheterizations this way for the last seven years.
There are times that someone should be under the care of a cardiologist, even if they presently don’t have symptoms of a heart condition. Dr. Ruisi says this includes people with risk factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or a family history of cardiac disease.
Getting established with a cardiology practice before you’re dealing with a serious problem allows you to create a connection and feel comfortable with your cardiologist should you need them in the future. “I treat my patients like my own family,” says Dr. Ruisi. “What drove me to become a cardiologist was being able to save a life with the immediate response that can be made with cardiac procedures.”
Village Heart and Vein is currently accepting new patients. Check with your insurance policy to determine if a referral is needed.