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As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we want to take the opportunity to shine a light on the remarkable achievements of women in cardiology, particularly here at Midwest Cardiovascular Institute (MCI).

According to the American College of Cardiology, there are more women in cardiology now than ever. This trend reflects both the growing interest among women in cardiology and the recognition of their capabilities in this challenging discipline. Across the globe, women in medicine are making significant strides in breaking barriers, bringing new innovations, and advancing health equity.

At MCI, these exceptional women lead the charge in cardiovascular care:

Dr. Maria Rosa Costanzo is a trailblazer in heart failure management, with an impressive background in advanced heart failure therapies and cardiac transplantation. Throughout her career, she has contributed to more than 275 publications, including peer-reviewed journals, book chapters, and manuscripts. She is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology, American College of Physicians, American Heart Association, and the European Society of Cardiology, along with being a Gold Member of the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology, showing her high standing in the medical field. Her contribution to the field of heart failure paved the way to make her an inspiration to all women in medicine.

Dr. Ann Davis stands out as an expert cardiologist on the team at MCI, with a keen focus on prevention, lipidology, and a comprehensive approach to treating heart disease. She is board certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease, and she is also a fellow of the American College of Cardiology. Her passion is to build meaningful connections with her patients, helping them to achieve healthy outcomes and live their fullest lives. Her technical and compassionate care as a female cardiologist is inspiring, contributing to the progression of women in cardiology around the world.

Julie Kozlowski, APRN serves as the Chief Nursing Officer at MCI in Naperville. With a Master of Science degree in nursing from Loyola University in Chicago, she has worked as an adult acute/critical care clinical nurse specialist. Now in an administrative role, Julie’s responsibilities include the oversight of clinical practice and the advancement of nursing protocols. However, what she is most known for is her passion for education, encouraging the professional development of her nursing staff. At the center of everything that she does is the patient, and she strives to improve all aspects of patient care. She is a true role model for women in nursing and in cardiology.

These women are true leaders in their field, and we are proud to have their expertise at MCI. Their work is a testament to the power of diversity and inclusion in advancing heart health for all. We honor all of the extraordinary women who are paving the way for a brighter future of female leadership in medicine.

NAPERVILLE, IL Dr. Mark Goodwin and Dr. Anand Ramanathan, interventional cardiologists at Midwest Cardiovascular Institute (MCI), are the first in the Midwest to use the Symplicity Spyral™ renal denervation (RDN) system to treat patients with high blood pressure. The procedure took place on December 20 at Edward Hospital, part of Endeavor Health℠.

Recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Symplicity Spyral™ renal denervation (RDN) system by Medtronic involves a minimally-invasive procedure that targets nerves near the kidneys that can become overactive and cause high blood pressure. The procedure is approved for use as an additional treatment in patients with high blood pressure when lifestyle changes and anti-hypertensive medications are not adequately controlling blood pressure. 

Hypertension is the single largest contributor to death, (1) and affects about 50% of U.S. adults. (2) Of the U.S. adults who are aware of their hypertension, about 80% do not have it under control. (3)

The Symplicity blood pressure procedure is clinically proven to help reduce high blood pressure, (4-6) which can lower serious health risks. (7) After mild sedation, the doctor inserts a very thin tube into the artery leading to the kidney. The doctor then administers energy to calm the excessive activity of the nerves connected to the kidney. The tube is removed, leaving no implant behind.

“High blood pressure is a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Goodwin. “Patients with high blood pressure or hypertension now have a new, innovative option when drugs and lifestyle changes aren’t enough. It is important to work closely with your cardiologist to manage blood pressure.”

  1. Hypertension fact sheet. September 13, 2019. Available at: Accessed February 15, 2022. 2. Kandzari DE, Böhm M, Mahfoud F, et al. Effect of renal denervation on blood pressure in the presence of antihypertensive drugs: 6-month efficacy and safety results from the SPYRAL HTN-ON MED proof-of-concept randomised trial. The Lancet. 2018 Jun 9;391(10137):2346-2355.
  2. S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Control Hypertension. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General; 2020.
  3. Facts about Hypertension. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Available at: Accessed August 10, 2023.
  4. Kandzari DE, Böhm M, Mahfoud F, et al. Effect of renal denervation on blood pressure in the presence of antihypertensive drugs: 6-month efficacy and safety results from the SPYRAL HTN-ON MED proof-of-concept randomised trial. The Lancet. 2018 Jun 9;391(10137):2346-2355.
  5. Böhm M, Kario K, Kandzari DE, et al. Efficacy of catheter-based renal denervation in the absence of antihypertensive medications (SPYRAL HTN-OFF MED Pivotal): a multicentre, randomized, sham-controlled trial. The Lancet 2020; Published online March 29, 2020. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30554-7.
  6. Townsend RR, Mahfoud F, Kandzari DE, et al. Catheter-based renal denervation in patients with uncontrolled hypertension in the absence of antihypertensive medications (SPYRAL HTN-OFF MED): a randomised, sham-controlled, proof-of-concept trial. The Lancet. 2017;390:2160–2170.
  7. Ettehad D, Emdin CA, Kiran A, et al. Blood pressure lowering for prevention of cardiovascular disease and death: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The Lancet. 2016;387:957-67.

David, age 79 of Chicago, suffered a heart attack, and is grateful for his second chance at life because of the physicians at Midwest Cardiovascular Institute. “I know how close I was to not being here,” he said. “But I have no visible or internal awareness of that now.” 

Hear from David, Dr. Mark Goodwin, and Dr. Anish Amin, and watch the heartfelt reunion between David and Dr. Goodwin. 

To see a cardiologist at one of our locations, click here to request an appointment. 

NAPERVILLE, IL- Midwest Cardiovascular Institute (MCI) has received the Target: BP™ Gold Award from the American Heart Association for its commitment to reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke through blood pressure management.

Eighty-one percent of MCI’s hypertensive adult patients have controlled blood pressure, surpassing the target of 70%. High blood pressure is the nation’s number one risk factor for heart attack and stroke, but out of 116 million U.S. adults living with high blood pressure, less than half have it controlled to target level.

“MCI is committed to managing blood pressure in our patients to lower their risk of heart attacks and strokes,” said MCI CEO Jacob Corbell. “To do this, MCI educates and trains our team and implements evidence-based guidelines to provide our patients the highest-quality cardiovascular care available.”

“As cardiologists, we understand that controlling blood pressure is one of the most effective ways to prevent and fight cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Mark Goodwin, interventional cardiologist at MCI in Naperville. “High blood pressure can cause damage to your heart, arteries, brain and kidneys, and it accounts for more cardiovascular deaths than any other risk factor, so make sure to get your blood pressure checked regularly.”

Click here to schedule an appointment with an MCI cardiologist near you. 

About Target, BP

Target: BP is a national collaboration between the American Heart Association and American Medical Association to reduce the number of Americans who experience heart attacks and strokes each year by urging physician practices, health systems and patients to prioritize hypertension control. The initiative supports health care organizations to improve blood pressure control rates through use of evidence-based protocols, tools and resources and recognizes organizations for achieving blood pressure control rates within the populations they serve.



March 13, 2023 | by Mark Goodwin, M.D

Edward Hospital in Naperville is one of only four hospitals in the U.S. to be selected as a site for use of the OpSens SavvyWire, the world’s first sensor-guided TAVR (transcatheter aortic valve replacement) wire. This technology enables surgeons to perform TAVR procedures more safely and efficiently.

Edward Hospital, part of NorthShore – Edward-Elmhurst Health, is known as a regional and national leader in cardiac innovation and was selected as one of the nation’s first hospitals to use SavvyWire, in part, because it performs more TAVR procedures than any other healthcare provider in Illinois.

TAVR is a minimally invasive surgical procedure for patients with a condition called aortic stenosis. This is when the aortic valve narrows severely and restricts blood flow from the heart’s lower left chamber, requiring the heart to pump harder. This can damage the heart over time and lead to serious health problems.

“In the past, the only way to fix a severely narrow valve was open heart surgery,” says Mark Goodwin, M.D., an interventional cardiologist at Midwest Cardiovascular Institute and System Medical Director, Cardiac Innovations & Structural Heart Center, Edward-Elmhurst Health. “Some people still get open heart surgery, but more people get TAVR.”

During a TAVR procedure, surgeons replace the narrow valve by inflating the existing valve and placing the new valve inside it. However, if they inflate the valve while the heart is beating, the heart will “spit out” the new valve. Surgeons must place a temporary pacemaker in the heart to pace it at 180 beats per minute for ten to fifteen seconds in order to deploy the new valve.

Prior to SavvyWire, surgeons accessed the narrow valve through two wires passed through the groin: one to place the pacemaker and the other to place the new valve. With SavvyWire, surgeons can use the same wire that deploys the new valve to also safely and efficiently pace the heart. This means surgeons only need to use one wire to perform the entire procedure.

“We can provide a safer and more efficient procedure,” says Dr. Goodwin. “Anytime you make a procedure simpler, it’s always better for the patient.”

While surgeons are not trying to race through the surgery (“This is not NASCAR,” says Dr. Goodwin), the procedure with SavvyWire only takes 30 to 45 minutes. Patients typically go home the following day.

Approximately 99% of TAVR procedures at Edward Hospital are successful. Through early 2023, the hospital has successfully used the SavvyWire during TAVR procedures on 26 patients.

“Edward Hospital is fortunate to be one of the clear leading innovation centers in the country,” says Dr. Goodwin. “With SavvyWire, our goal is to continue to lead in cardiac innovation, both locally and nationally.”

Learn more about cardiac care at Edward-Elmhurst Health.

In this video, Dr. Aman Ali discusses risk factors of heart disease, diagnosis, treatment and lifestyle changes that you can make to improve your heart health and protect your heart. This segment was made possible by Edward-Elmhurst Health and televised on NCTV17 (

Sudden cardiac arrest was thrust into the national spotlight in January, when Buffalo Bills player Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field after a tackle. Thankfully, the team’s medical staff began immediate cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and restored his heartbeat, actions Hamlin’s doctors credited with saving his life. As an elite athlete, is his situation unique? Sudden cardiac arrest is a major public health problem. It’s a condition where the heart stops beating without warning and can lead to death in minutes if the person doesn’t get help right away. Chances of survival are 10-15 percent when it happens outside of a hospital. Yet, early recognition and effective CPR can double or triple the chance of survival. CPR is, quite possibly, the most important skill a non-medical person should know. Are there symptoms or warning signs of a cardiac arrest? Who is at risk?

In Episode 61, Dr. G and his guest Moeen Saleem, M.D., discuss the facts about cardiac arrest, why it’s vital that people learn how to recognize sudden cardiac arrest, how to provide effective CPR and how to use an Automatic External Defibrilator (AED). Guest Moeen Saleem, MD – Double board-certified cardiologist and cardiac electrophysiologist, Midwest Cardiovascular Institute; Director of the Electrophysiology Lab at Edward Hospital.

Does heart disease run in your family? Dr. Anish Amin, interventional cardiologist, joined Healthy Driven Chicago to share important questions that you can ask to better understand your risk of heart disease. 

April Lester, 35 from Villa Park, IL, thought she’d have to live with chest pain her whole life. She experienced it for two years; it started when she began dialysis and was put on medication. She told her primary care and dialysis techs about the pain in her chest and was told it was just a murmur. But, she was never referred to a cardiologist. She even visited the emergency room for chest pain and a tight sensation in her left chest. She had bloodwork done and a couple of tests, but she was discharged home.

Her pain continued daily, and she finally decided that something had to give. “I googled cardiologists near me,” she said. And that’s how she came to meet Dr. Elmer Murdock, interventional cardiologist at Midwest Cardiovascular Institute (MCI). She first saw him on September 9, when he ordered an echocardiogram and other tests that showed she had a dilated ascending aorta and dissection. A dissection is a tear in the large blood vessel branching off of the heart (aorta). Hers was from her heart down to her leg. She was told surgery was needed.

“April had recurrent chest pain without a clear diagnosis,” said Dr. Murdock. “It’s important to know that if you are having chest pain, or any symptoms that are new, it’s okay to seek a second opinion. There’s also a reason why high blood pressure is called a silent killer.”

“Before finding MCI, I didn’t have the clear answers I needed,” she said. Though she was nervous, she finally had a diagnosis, and she hoped that this could be her breakthrough. “Everyone at MCI, the nurses, and the doctors were very understanding and caring.” As soon as Dr. Murdock received her test results back, he sent her to Cardiac Surgery Associates for surgery.

The procedure April had was an aortic root and arch replacement. “It was a life-saving procedure for her,” said Aaron Kime, MD, cardiothoracic surgeon with Cardiac Surgery Associates, who performed the procedure. “A type A aortic dissection is a nearly universally fatal event if left untreated due to the risk of aortic rupture, acute aortic insufficiency, or disruption of a coronary artery. The procedure we did has protected her from any of those events.” The procedure took about six hours.

Just a few short weeks after her procedure, April can’t believe the results. She can now live without the daily pain in her chest. She is recovering and participating in cardiac rehabilitation. “I am back to feeling like a normal person!” she exclaimed. She is so happy that she chose to listen to her symptoms and pursue a visit with a cardiologist at MCI. “Now, I have become more grateful for life. I get emotional talking about it. MCI, Dr. Murdock, and Dr. Kime are the best! Words cannot express how grateful I am for the whole team.”

The collaboration between Midwest Cardiovascular Institute and Cardiac Surgery Associates is a valuable partnership that benefits the patients we serve. By working closely together, we are able to ensure that patients receive the highest quality of care and the most appropriate treatment for their specific needs. This close collaboration allows for seamless communication and coordination between all of the medical professionals involved in a patient’s care, which can lead to better outcomes and more efficient and effective care. 

NAPERVILLE, IL– Dr. Kousik Krishnan, electrophysiologist at Midwest Cardiovascular Institute (MCI), is the first to use the Abbott Aveir™ VR Leadless Pacemaker to treat abnormal heart rhythm at Edward-Elmhurst Health (EEH).

A leadless pacemaker is a small, battery-powered device with no wires that delivers electrical energy to the heart to keep it in regular rhythm. Manufactured by Abbott, the Aveir™ VR Leadless Pacemaker (LP) is the next evolution in leadless technology that has been designed for chronic retrieval. At just 38.0 mm and smaller than an AAA battery, the Aveir™ VR LP features up to twice the projected battery life compared to other leadless pacemakers when using ISO standard settings and brings fewer lead-related complications compared to transvenous pacemakers with wires. It also offers mapping capability to assess correct placement of the device before final fixation within the heart, and is designed to be enabled by future software to support a dual-chamber pacing system upon regulatory approval. 

“We want our patients to not only live longer, but better,” said Dr. Krishnan. “The entire electrophysiology team at Edward Elmhurst Health is proud to offer this new technology to patients in need of a pacemaker. It is a game-changer for our patients due to no lead-related complications, future upgradeability, and fewer restrictions post-implant.”

Learn more about this therapy here.

Click here to find a list of MCI locations.