Dr. Katherine Lietz Named Medical Director of Loyola's Heart Failure Device Program

News Archive January 18, 2011

Dr. Katherine Lietz Named Medical Director of Loyola's Heart Failure Device Program

MAYWOOD, Ill. -- Katherine Lietz, MD, PhD, one of nation's leading experts on the implantation of mechanical pumps to assist failing hearts, has joined Loyola University Health System as medical director of the Heart Failure Device Program. Lietz was recruited from Yale University School of Medicine, where she was medical director of the Heart Transplant and Ventricular Assist Device Program. Lietz has treated more than 500 heart transplant patients and about 200 patients who have received left ventricular assist devices (LVADs). An LVAD is an implantable device that helps pump blood from the heart's left ventricle to the rest of the body. It can be used as a temporary therapy until a patient receives a heart transplant or as a permanent therapy for patients with end-stage heart failure. Lietz is an internationally recognized expert on the selection of LVAD patients, the optimal time to implant LVADs and patient outcome assessment. She developed the Lietz Score, a tool to access surgical risks, and is a key member of a team of physicians who are writing clinical LVAD guidelines for the International Society for Heart & Lung Transplantation. She has written more than 60 papers, book chapters and review articles on heart replacement therapy, and has lectured extensively at national and international meetings of her professional peers. Lietz received her MD and PhD in Transplantation Immunology from the Medical University of Warsaw. She completed a Heart Transplant and Assist Device research fellowship at Columbia University and cardiology fellowship training at the University of Minnesota and Georgetown University. As many as 300,000 patients with end-stage heart failure potentially could benefit from LVADs each year in the United States, but fewer than 2,000 patients receive them. "We need to increase public awareness about this life-saving treatment," Dr. Lietz said. Lietz is an assistant professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine.
Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is a member of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. The medical center campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of the Chicago Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. The heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as the LUC Stritch School of Medicine, the LUC Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.
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