By Holly Saddler
Dr. Keyur Vora, a cardiology physician-scientist and Carmel resident, recently co-authored a new system to help assess and treat heart attacks.
Referred to as the CCS-AMI Classification, the framework helps define the different stages of heart attacks by focusing on the damage occurring to the heart muscle.
“Stage 1 represents a scenario with little to no discernible damage to the heart muscle,” Vora said. “As one progresses through Stage 2, there is some damage present, albeit without harm to small blood vessels. Stage 3 introduces a more complicated scenario, illustrating damage alongside the blockage of small blood vessels. Finally, Stage 4 unveils a critical situation where damage coexists with the blockage and rupture of small blood vessels, resulting in bleeding into the heart muscle.”
As the damage increases through the stages so does the likelihood of complications such as irregular heartbeats, heart failure and the potential for fatal outcomes. The CCS-AMI Classification system is working toward helping healthcare providers administer personalized effective care.
“Imagine the CCS-AMI Classification as a revolutionary upgrade in how we understand and deal with heart attacks,” Vora said. “It’s like trading in an old paper map for a cutting-edge GPS system. This upgrade is a big deal for everyday folks because it allows doctors to tailor treatments with incredible precision based on the specific stage of heart damage. It’s not a one-size-fits-all approach anymore. It’s more like getting a treatment plan that’s custom-designed just for you.”
Vora is an assistant research professor of medicine at the Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center at the Indiana University school of medicine and collaborated with lead authors Dr. Rohan Dharmakumar, executive director, KCVRC and Dr. Andreas Kumar, a cardiologist from Northern Ontario, to create the classification system.
Originally a practicing cardiologist, Vora decided to become a physician-scientist after his experience in interventional cardiac imaging. It became a pivotal factor in his decision, as he sought to bridge the gap between clinical practice and scientific inquiry. He utilized his background in interventional cardiac imaging, bioinformatics and data science to further his understanding of heart attacks and push his commitment to advancing cardiovascular care through research and innovation.