Focusing on You: UHealth Cardiologist Discusses Reversing Heart Failure

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UHealth program provides personalized treatment plans to help patients live longer.

In this segment, Luanda Grazette, M.D., M.P.H., FACC, a cardiologist and director of the Advanced Heart Failure and Heart Failure Recovery Program at the University of Miami Health System, discusses heart disease. She focuses on what we can do to prevent it, and how UHealth is working to manage and in some cases reverse heart failure in patients.

Dominick Esposito is one of those patients.

Retired police officer Dominick Esposito has enjoyed an active life. But recently, walking left him winded. “I couldn't walk 20 feet without stopping to catch my breath,” Dominick says.

Dominick went to see Dr. Luanda Grazette, a cardiologist and director of the Advanced Heart Failure and Heart Failure Recovery Program at UHealth.

“Heart failure or insuficiencia cardíaca is a condition that occurs as a result of damage to the heart,” says Dr. Grazette. “So, patients will have issues with problems breathing because of fluid buildup in the lungs, or they may have bloating in other parts of the body.”

Dominick says Dr. Grazette took the time to go over his medical records and developed a personalized treatment plan just for him. “I left there feeling I was going to survive. And that's the first time in weeks that I ever thought I had a chance to live,” says Dominick.

Thanks to recent advancements patients can manage and live with heart failure the way they do with other chronic diseases like diabetes. “With appropriate care and change in habits and medications and so forth, people live a normal life and actually have a good quality of life and a good length of life,” Dr. Grazette says.

Dr. Grazette put Dominick on a combination of medications to improve his heart function. He went from barely moving to active again!

“I now do close to two and a half miles a day walking. She saved my life,” says Dominick.


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Tips for focusing on heart health

As you get older, heart health becomes more important particularly if you are over 65. There are steps you can take to manage your cardiovascular risk. Ask these questions as you make positive changes for your health.