Leading the way for heart care in Tennessee | Ascension
Cardiologist Dr. Lichaa at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart talks with a male patient in an exam room.

Leading the way in heart care for Tennessee

Choose Ascension Saint Thomas Heart to be your first choice – from heart and vascular screenings to surgery. Schedule with a cardiologist.

When you choose Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, you get an experienced cardiovascular specialist and care team who are part of a nationally recognized team, sharing best practices and the latest research and treatment. Every appointment starts with a conversation. Your care team takes the time to listen and answer all your questions — so you get a personalized care plan.

Specialists at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart diagnose and treat:

  • Congestive heart failure
  • Coronary artery disease (CAD)
  • Heart attack
  • Heart muscle disease (cardiomyopathy)
  • Heart rhythm disorders such as atrial fibrillation (AFib), flutter and ventricular tachycardia
  • Heart valve and structural heart disease
  • High blood pressure and high cholesterol

Advanced heart care at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart

At Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, our nationally recognized cardiac team cares for more adult hearts than anyone in the state, offering the largest network of cardiologists with over 45 locations. Ascension Saint Thomas Hospital also earned the exclusive “High Performing” status in all cardiac categories by the U.S. News and World Report.

Find a doctor and start by calling to schedule an appointment. Ask if a virtual visit is an option for your care. Need a second opinion appointment? Our team can help. Schedule a consultation today.

Multispecialty heart care team

When you need more advanced heart care, your doctor can connect you with a heart specialist near you. From heart scans to advanced cardiovascular surgery, your doctors, specialists and care team at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart collaborate, working together for you and with you. Our advanced specialty care includes:

Cardiovascular surgery at Ascension Saint Thomas in Nashville TN looking at colleague during surgery.

Advanced surgical care for heart conditions

At Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, we specialize in minimally invasive and open-heart surgery, including robotic cardiac surgery. Minimally invasive procedures, including TAVR, may help shorten your recovery time and lower your risk of infection. If open-heart surgery is recommended, our surgeons have the expertise to provide the advanced heart care you need.

Transplant surgeon Dr. Yerokun at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart in Nashville, TN, talks to a patient in an exam room.

Heart transplant and VAD care for advanced heart failure

If transplant or ventricular assist devices are recommended as part of your care plan, you are connected to experienced cardiologists and surgeons at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart who specialize in more advanced care and open-heart surgery. Your surgical care plan is personalized to your needs.

Interventional cardiologist Dr Keswani from Ascension Saint Thomas Heart  in Nashville listening to woman's heart.

Specialized care for chest pain

Ascension Saint Thomas Chest Pain Centers deliver specialized heart care including diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation. Cardiac rehabilitation is often recommended following a heart attack, heart failure, heart surgery or transplant. With more than 80 specialists at 45 locations throughout Tennessee, we provide advanced heart care, close to home.

Electrophysiologist Dr. Kaiser at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart in procedure room with scrubs.

Care for AFib and heart rhythm disorders

At Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, our electrophysiologists specialize in the heart’s electrical system, diagnosing and treating heart rhythm disorders. Your doctor works with you on a personalized care plan. We provide minimally invasive treatments for AFib, including ablation, cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT), cardioversion and left atrial appendage closure.

Heart surgery patient in hospital bed.

Care for heart and valve conditions

Ascension Saint Thomas Heart provides advanced diagnostics, heart valve imaging, and therapeutic and surgical treatments. Whenever possible, your doctor may recommend robotic surgery and minimally invasive procedures, such as transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) and MitraClip™. We also have the largest robotic cardiac surgery program in the nation.

Male doctor talking to older white male patient about structural heart valve care

Specialized care for aortic valve disorders

Heart care teams at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart provide advanced care for aortic valve disorders, including aortic valve stenosis and bicuspid aortic valve disease. Talk to your doctor about non-surgical and minimally invasive procedures such as TAVR to help treat your condition.

Heart failure specialist Dr. Huston talks with a male patient at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart in Nashville, TN.

Advanced care for heart failure

Ascension Saint Thomas Heart can diagnose and treat heart failure. If you feel you are at risk or have received a recent diagnosis, request a first consultation from our multidisciplinary care team. Your doctor delivers a personalized care plan that may include medication, remote patient monitoring, advanced therapeutics and surgical care.

male patient in hospital bed smiling with family

ECMO for heart and lung support

Experienced specialists at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart provide extra corporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) therapy as part of advanced care for patients who have life-threatening lung and heart conditions, including severe heart and respiratory failure, and who are critically ill. ECMO may also be recommended in care for patients awaiting a heart or lung transplant.

Cardiovascular surgeon Dr. Edwards talks with a female patient at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart.

Specialized heart care for women

At Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, we specialize in providing heart care for the heart health needs of women. Your doctor diagnoses, treats and monitors heart conditions, including heart disease, heart attack and chronic chest pain. Your care team works with you to help manage symptoms of heart conditions and provide more advanced care such as heart and vascular surgery.

Dr. Kerrigan and Dr. Haddid from Ascension Saint Thomas Heart in the cath lab preparing to care for a patient.

Advanced care for chronic total occlusion

A chronic total occlusion (CTO) is a complex heart condition with a 100 percent blockage in one or more coronary arteries. Symptoms may include chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, nausea and rapid or irregular heartbeat. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, talk with a heart specialist at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart about your treatment options.

Dr. Mark Zenker of Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, looks at a computer screen of a vascular image.

Get care for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

As a Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Center of Excellence, we specialize in diagnosing and treating HCM — a heart condition where the walls of your heart thicken over time. Your doctor may recommend medications, a cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD), mitral valve repair, alcohol septal ablation or a clinical research study to help treat your condition.

Black female doctor talking to older female patient about heart failure and transplants

Care for heart conditions associated with cancers

At Ascension Saint Thomas Heart, our cardiologists specialize in treating heart conditions that develop during or after cancer therapy. If you experience heart problems at any stage of your cancer care, your oncologist may connect you to a specialist to deliver heart care for your specific needs.

Cardiology Dr. Johnson listens to women's heart at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart in Nashville.

Heart scans to detect risk

A simple heart screening can help you and your doctor better understand your heart health and could help save your life. Talk to your primary care doctor to see if a heart screening is right for you.

A heart scan is not for everyone. It is not recommended for routine screening of people who do not have symptoms of heart disease and have a low risk of heart attacks. Some heart disease risk factors include hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, tobacco use or a family history of heart disease. Talk with your doctor to see if a heart scan is right for you.

Man taking part in cardiac rehabilitation.

Cardiac rehabilitation

Rehab specialists at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart work with you to strengthen your heart and lungs and help manage your symptoms. During cardiopulmonary rehabilitation, we monitor your heart, nutrition, and lifestyle changes to lower your cholesterol, blood pressure and improve your overall health. We also help you cope with stress by providing support to you and your family.

Get a second opinion from a heart and vascular specialist

Get the confidence and peace of mind that your doctor and cardiovascular care plan are right for you. It's easy to get a second opinion at Ascension Saint Thomas Heart. We can review your medical records and healthcare history to answer your questions and discuss options. Talk with one of our doctors about a personalized heart care plan.

When you are facing a new diagnosis or are deciding on a surgical or therapeutic treatment plan, there’s a lot to think about. If you are looking for a second opinion for advanced heart care, our cardiologists can also connect you with the right specialists for robotic surgery or minimally invasive surgery, including TAVR, MitraClip, WATCHMAN™, and ablation. Our heart specialists can provide a second opinion, based on our experience and as part of a national care team.

Before your appointment, check with your insurance company to find out if a second opinion is covered. We can request your medical records on your behalf, so that they can be shared with your care team before your arrival.


Frequently asked questions about heart care

  • When should I talk to my doctor about my heart health?

    Feeling tired or being out of breath while doing the everyday activities you usually do may be warning signs that you have a heart condition. If you have concerns about new symptoms, talk with your doctor. And if you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol or heart disease and haven’t connected with your doctor in a while, schedule an appointment today.

  • When should I have a heart scan?

    Your age, gender, lifestyle and medical history play a role in your heart health. If you have symptoms of heart disease or are unsure about your risk, talk to your doctor about a heart scan. A CT heart scan can help you and your doctor better understand your risk for heart attack. The imaging test delivers a coronary calcium score based on the amount of calcium-containing plaque that has built up in your heart arteries. You may benefit from a heart scan if you:

    • Are a man over age 40 or a woman over age 50
    • Are a smoker or have a history of smoking
    • Have a family history of heart attack at an early age
    • Have diabetes
    • Have high blood pressure
    • Have high cholesterol

    Talk with your doctor about having a coronary calcium scoring heart scan. You should not have a heart scan if you are pregnant, or have already had a heart attack, coronary bypass surgery or a coronary stent.

  • What are the symptoms of a heart attack?

    For both women and men, the most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women may be more likely to experience shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting, and back or jaw pain.

    If you are experiencing chest pain, especially in combination with jaw or arm pain, lightheadedness, nausea, vomiting or difficulty breathing, you might be having a heart attack. Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room right away.

    Watch for these symptoms of heart attack in both men and women:

    • Chest discomfort, pressure or pain
    • Difficulty breathing independent of activity
    • Lightheadedness or loss of consciousness
    • New weakness or fatigue
    • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
    • Sudden pain in arm (particularly left arm), jaw, neck or back
  • What is high blood pressure?

    High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is blood pressure that is higher than normal. It happens when the force of blood pushing against the walls of your arteries is too high. High blood pressure is a chronic condition that can increase your risk for heart disease and stroke. Talk to your doctor about risk factors and how to manage your blood pressure.

  • What are some signs of clogged arteries?

    Clogged arteries, also known as coronary artery disease (CAD), happens when plaque, including fats and cholesterol, build up on your artery walls. Plaque buildup, called atherosclerosis, can slow or completely block blood flow to your heart. Symptoms of clogged arteries may include:

    • A cold sweat
    • Chest pain or discomfort (angina)
    • Light-headedness
    • Nausea
    • Pain or discomfort in the arms or shoulder
    • Shortness of breath
    • Weakness

    Talk to your doctor about how to reduce your risk for coronary artery disease. If you are an adult with high blood pressure and cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, use tobacco or have a family history of heart disease, your doctor may recommend getting a CT scan of your heart.

  • What are the different types of heart specialists?

    A cardiologist specializes in the diagnosis of heart disease and care of the heart muscle, coronary arteries and veins that carry blood.

    A heart surgeon, also called a cardiac, cardiothoracic or general thoracic surgeon,  performs surgery on your heart, lungs, esophagus and other parts of your chest. Heart transplant surgeons specialize in treating heart failure with heart transplantation and ventricular assist devices (VAD).

    Surgeons and cardiologists at Ascension sites of care are part of a national care team of doctors, sharing best practices and advanced treatment options for more complex heart care.

    Different types of heart specialists and surgeons include:

    • Cardiac rehabilitation specialist
    • Cardiothoracic (heart and vascular) surgeon
    • Congenital heart specialist, for children and adults
    • Electrophysiologist for AFib and other heart rhythm disorders
    • General cardiologist
    • Heart failure specialist
    • Heart transplant surgeon
    • Interventional cardiologist, focuses on cardiac catheterization and minimally invasive procedures
    • Nuclear cardiologist, performs advanced heart imaging
    • Pediatric cardiologist, for infants, children and teens
    • Pulmonary hypertension specialist
  • How do I find a cardiologist near me?

    If you are looking for a cardiologist or a second opinion on a diagnosis or your care plan, we can help. You’ll find that managing long-term and chronic heart care needs is easier with a team ready to support you. Your primary care doctor can connect you with a cardiologist close to home.

Care for your heart shouldn’t wait

Dr. Rodriguez and the heart care team at Ascension takes the time to listen and answer all your questions.