[MUSIC PLAYING] ERICA JONES: Throughout my career, I've seen unbelievable saves in people who have heart failure and arrhythmias. But to me, the most tragic are the patients who come in who were completely asymptomatic prior to their first event, and actually die if that first heart attack. In 20 years of being a cardiologist, I've seen that more times than I'd like to tell you.
No leaking, no nothing. It looks absolutely gorgeous.
SPEAKER 2: Oh, great.
ERICA JONES: I run the clinical arm of the Dalio Institute of Cardiovascular Imaging. It's very unique in that this is a research institute, but our goal is to translate our research directly into patient care. I did my residency and fellowship at Weill Cornell, and I absolutely loved it. And when I was offered a position in cardiology, I took it right away, because essentially, this is my home, and I knew that I would thrive here.
The scientists that I get to work with are just incredible. They're developing everything from three dimensional imaging and printing to testing new devices that can help the heart function. You get in a room with them, and you're like, that was really cool.
Come on in, have a seat.
SPEAKER 2: Thank you.
ERICA JONES: First and foremost, how do you feel?
SPEAKER 2: I just started exercising once a week. You know, started doing that spin stuff.
ERICA JONES: A stress test is actually a great way to determine if a patient's symptoms are actually being caused by a blockage in their arteries. Having said that, a stress test wouldn't really have warned us that that person is at risk. It would've been normal. There's really no better way to know what's going on in your risk profile than to actually see your coronary arteries.
No plaque is good, but soft plaque is more dangerous than the hard calcified plaque. On the CT scans, we're looking for both. Our goal is to find at-risk patients, image their arteries, and figure out if they actually have disease or risk. And then get them on appropriate treatment so that risk is lower.
JAMES MIN: Here this scan looks excellent. The left anterior descending artery is completely clear.
ERICA JONES: My colleague, Dr. Min, is really a pioneer in his field. His research has proven that we can image the arteries in such a way that we can tell people what their risk is before they're symptomatic. He's the researcher, I'm the clinician, but we're working together to figure out what's the best way to help a patient. And I find it very satisfying to then be able to go speak to my patients about the research that's going on, essentially right next door.
My husband Doug and I have been married for 24 years, and we have three children. One's in college, one's leaving for college, and my youngest daughter just graduated from middle school.
SPEAKER 4: Fiona Jones.
ERICA JONES: I see a lot of positive thing in medicine. And so much is becoming available to my children's generation in terms of prevention. I know that they won't be exposed to nearly as much disease. For their future, medicine is just really unlimited.
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For cardiologist Dr. Erica Jones, helping others has always been her passion. From applying new research to help patients prevent and manage heart disease, to mentoring cardiovascular fellows, Dr. Jones has found a home at Weill Cornell Medicine.