Renown Cardiologist Shares Insight On Warfarin, The Life-Saving Blood Thinner That Started Out As Rat Poison
Renown Health's Dr. Christopher Rowan recently joined a distinguished panel of experts on the "Game Changers in Medicine" podcast to discuss the science behind the discovery of warfarin. Renown Health Cardiologist Dr. Christopher Rowan was just featured on an episode of Game Changers in Medicine, a groundbreaking medical history podcast from Dramatic Health about some of the world’s most significant medical discoveries. The episode, Warfarin: How a rat poison became one of the world's most widely prescribed drugs, dives into the fascinating history of Warfarin and its life-saving effects on humans. During the episode, Dr. Rowan, whose research focus is heart disease and atherosclerosis, is joined by experts Kevin Walters, Historian and Strategic Research Coordinator at the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF); and Ramya M. Rajagopalan, Ph.D. of the Institute for Practical Ethics at UC San Diego. Listen to the episode now or download it wherever you listen to podcasts. History of Warfarin Warfarin prevents blood clots from forming or expanding. The drug is especially important for individuals who have experienced a heart attack or stroke, or are at risk of experiencing either. However, the backstory of the drug is rather fascinating. Beginning in the 1920s, an unknown disease was killing cattle throughout the U.S. and Canada. Desperate to find a solution, one farmer drove 200 miles to the University of Wisconsin with a dead cow, bales of spoiled hay and a milk can of unclotted blood in tow. He crossed paths with a scientist, whose team set out to determine the hemorrhagic component of the spoiled hay, resulting in a series of medical discoveries that would revolutionize medicine. After learning more about Warfarin and how Vitamin K could reverse its blood thinning properties, doctors first prescribed the drug for human use in 1954. It is perhaps most widely known for saving President Dwight D. Eisenhower after he suffered a heart attack in 1955. Today, Warfarin continues to saves millions of lives each year. “Before blood thinners like Warfarin, people would experience strokes, blood clots in their lungs, blood clots in their legs, blood clots in their hearts, along with countless other clotting disorders - these conditions likely cutting their lifespans short,” Dr. Rowan said during the podcast. “Warfarin revolutionized the treatment of patients who suffer from heart attacks and strokes, helping them to live normal and healthy lives. The drug changed medicine forever and helped make incredible innovations such as mechanical heart valves a reality.” Interview Opportunity Dr. Rowan is available for interviews to discuss the importance of this unique medical discovery and the positive impact it has on many of the patients he treats every day. Please email email@example.com or call 775-691- 7308 to coordinate an interview. About Renown Health Renown Health is the region’s largest, locally owned and governed, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,000 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest, locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown’s institute model addresses social determinants of health and includes: Child Health, Behavioral Health & Addiction, Healthy Aging and Health Innovation. Clinical institutes include: Cancer, Heart and Vascular Heath, Neurosciences and Robotic Surgery. Renown is currently enrolling participants in the world’s largest community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project® . For more information, visit renown.org. About Dramatic Health Dramatic Health, a national healthcare video company, is the producer of the six-part podcast series Game Changers in Medicine. The series premiered in July with an episode about Vitamin K and an enterprising Boston house doctor. The August episode showcased the creation of a smallpox vaccine and its parallels to today's urgent search for a COVID-19 vaccine. Game Changers in Medicine ranked #27 in Apple Podcasts: Life Sciences in the United States according to Chartable as of August 21, 2020. Both episodes, a series backgrounder, and additional material about the podcast series are available at www.gamechangersinmedicine.com and can be accessed wherever you listen to podcasts.
American Heart Association awards shine national spotlight on care offered in northern Nevada. Renown Regional Medical Center has been honored once again by the American Heart Association (AHA) for high quality heart care. Renown’s focus on quality and applying the most up-to-date, evidenced-based treatment guidelines improves patient outcomes, getting people home sooner and back to doing what they love. “We are pleased to recognize Renown for their commitment to heart failure care,” said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee and Executive Vice Chair of Neurology, Director of Acute Stroke Services, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. “Recognizing the significance of preventing, diagnosing and caring for people with heart and vascular disease, which continues to be on the rise and taking far too many lives, is of critical importance to us at Renown,” says Tony Slonim, M.D., DrPH, FACHE, president and CEO, Renown Health. “We are proud of our incredible team for providing the highest-quality clinical care, and thank the American Heart Association for this national recognition.” Renown Regional was awarded The Get with the Guidelines – Heart Failure Gold Plus Quality Achievement award for continually ensuring heart failure patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines, as well as AHA’s Mission: Lifeline Gold Receiving honor for the treatment of patients who suffer severe heart attacks. “Renown offers the most highly-skilled and experienced heart and vascular team and the most advanced heart center in the region. Having national recognition for being the region’s heart care leader is critical to a Destination Health strategy,” said Josiah "Sy" Johnson, MBA, chief of staff for Renown Health. “We at Renown are proud to bring a high level of world-class care providers, leading-edge care and new delivery approaches to meet the needs of people in northern Nevada through our Institute for Heart & Vascular Health.” Why This Recognition Matters to You - Heart Attack Care Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the deadliest type of heart attack, caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. Renown earned the award by meeting specific criteria and standards of performance for quick treatment to re-establish blood flow to blocked arteries in heart attack patients. “Our expert staff treat problems that extend from mild to the most critical of emergencies,” said Christopher M. Kozlowski, MD, MHA, vice president and medical director of Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health. “Specialized physicians including cardiologists, interventional radiologists, heart and vascular surgeons, emergency medicine and trauma surgeons, primary care providers, nurses and other clinicians work as a team to determine the best treatment plan for each patient. We encourage all patients to discuss with their care team whether they should undergo formal screening for early heart disease.” Why This Recognition Matters to You - Heart Failure Care According to the AHA, more than 6.5 million adults in the United States are living with heart failure. Heart failure patients can lead full, enjoyable lives when their condition is managed with proper medications or devices and with healthy lifestyle changes. “Renown’s reputation as the region’s heart care leader has been built over many years. We performed the area’s first open-heart surgery, angioplasty, stent and valve replacements decades ago. Renown Regional offers incredible advancements like trans-catheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) and trans-catheter mitral valve repair (TMVr) with MitraClip therapy, lifesaving alternatives to open-heart surgery for patients considered high-risk or inoperable,” said Erik Olson, chief executive officer of Renown Regional Medical Center. “Offering the highest level of comprehensive care for patients experiencing cardiac and vascular disease, Renown developed its first division of cardiothoracic surgery dedicated to heart surgery patients in 2019.” The Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health program now offers a Diagnostic Electrophysiology Lab; a Chest Pain Center using the D-SPECT® heart camera; multiple Interventional Labs; Heart Failure Program; several Cardiac Catheterization Labs; Interventional Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery when necessary; and the only Pritikin-certified Healthy Heart Program in the West, creating individualized rehabilitation plans tailored to each patient’s needs, so they can exercise safely, eat healthy, manage stress and cook nourishing, balanced meals, all while gaining a healthy mindset. Renown is among the nation’s top-performing hospitals for heart attack treatment and one of only 105 hospitals nationwide to receive the American College of Cardiology ACTION Registry Silver Performance Achievement Award recognizing success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients. Renown’s Roseview, Sierra and Cardiac Intensive Care Units (ICUs) are the only ICUs in Nevada to receive the Beacon Award of Excellence from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses. U.S. News and World Report’s Best Hospital rankings recently named Renown hospitals as best in the state of Nevada. Patients in need of advanced heart care can speak with their care provider about Renown Medical Group – Specialty Care, which can be reached at 775-982-6270 or visit renown.org/HeartCare. About Renown Health Renown Health is the region’s largest, locally owned and governed, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,000 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest, locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown’s institute model addresses social determinants of health and includes: Child Health, Behavioral Health & Addiction, Healthy Aging and Health Innovation. Clinical institutes include: Cancer, Heart and Vascular Heath, Neurosciences and Robotic Surgery. Renown is currently enrolling participants in the world’s largest community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project®. For more information, visit renown.org. About Mission: Lifeline The American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program helps hospitals and emergency medical services develop systems of care that follow proven standards and procedures for STEMI patients. The program works by mobilizing teams across the continuum of care to implement American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Foundation clinical treatment guidelines. For more information, visit heart.org. About Get With The Guidelines Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that provides hospitals with the latest research-based guidelines. Developed with the goal of saving lives and hastening recovery, Get With The Guidelines has touched the lives of more than 9 million patients since 2001. For more information, visit heart.org.