Faculty Profiles

Hiroko, Beck
Beck, Hiroko, MDAssistant Professor
Email: hbeck@buffalo.edu
Phone: (716) 829-2663

Specialty/Research Focus:
Cardiology; Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology

Research Summary:
I am a clinical cardiac electrophysiologist, and my focus and passion are in evaluating and managing cardiac arrhythmias and their associated symptoms such as palpitations and syncope. I treat patients with bradycardia, heart block, supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) ­­ including atrial tachycardia, atrioventricular nodal reentrant tachycardia (AVNRT) and atrioventricular reentrant tachycardia (AVRT), atrial fibrillation (AF) and ventricular tachycardia. My main clinical responsibilities include diagnostic and therapeutic procedures for arrhythmias such as electrophysiologic studies, and ablation of arrhythmias such as atrial flutter, AF, SVT and ventricular tachycardia. I perform implantation and extraction of cardiac implantable electronic devices (CIEDs) such as pacemakers, implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) and biventricular pacemakers and ICDs for the treatment of certain patients with heart failure. I also perform laser lead extraction in patients with malfunctioning or infected pacemaker and ICD leads. I believe in extensive pre- and post-procedural care and provide in-depth consultation and close communication with my patients, referring physicians and staff. I monitor closely my post-implant patients through the use of remote monitoring systems, and I am a strong advocate for appropriate reprogramming to accommodate the needs of patients with CIEDs. I evaluate and treat inpatients with cardiovascular disease and other cardiac disorders at Buffalo General Medical Center (BGMC) as part of the Cardiac Critical Care Unit and the cardiology consult service and at the Buffalo VA Medical Center (Buffalo VAMC). I also see outpatients at various sites, including the BGMC Heart and Lung Center, UBMD Internal Medicine Electrophysiology Clinic and the Buffalo VAMC Electrophysiology Clinic. I am involved in the RE-CIRCUIT clinical trial. It evaluates treatment using the drug Pradaxa in patients with paroxysmal or persistent nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) who are scheduled to undergo a first ablation procedure. I also have a research interest in using imaging techniques to delineate patients with infection who might require extraction of CIEDs. By the innovative use of PET scan techniques, physicians can differentiate pacemaker lead infection versus fibrosis. The goal of this research is to help physicians decide whether patients really need laser lead extraction or if the procedure could be avoided. I enjoy teaching. I lecture on arrhythmias in various forums, including continuing medical education classes, and to a variety of trainees, including medical students, residents and fellows as well as other health professionals in internal medicine and emergency medicine. I supervise cardiology fellows during their clinics, inpatient consultation and electrophysiology rotations at BGMC and the Buffalo VAMC.

Michael, Cain
Cain, Michael, MDVice President for Health Sciences and Dean, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
Email: mcain@buffalo.edu
Phone: (716) 829-3955

Specialty/Research Focus:
Cardiology; Cardiovascular Disease; Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology; Internal Medicine

Research Summary:
An internationally recognized cardiovascular physician-scientist, Dr. Cain is a specialist in abnormal heart rhythms. He is board-certified in internal medicine, cardiovascular diseases and clinical cardiac electrophysiology and pacing. He is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology, the American Heart Association and the Heart Rhythm Society. A former associate editor of Circulation, Cain is a member of the editorial boards of the American Journal of Cardiology, the Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology, Nature Clinical Practice Cardiovascular Medicine and Heart Rhythm. His NIH-supported research has focused on determining the mechanisms of life-threatening heart rhythm abnormalities that occur in heart attacks and other conditions that damage heart muscle cells. This information is being used to better characterize and more accurately localize the abnormal heart tissue responsible for these abnormal heart rhythms and to improve the identification of patients at increased risk for sudden cardiac death.

Anne, Curtis
Curtis, Anne, MDCharles and Mary Bauer Professor and Chair & SUNY Distinguished Professor
Email: abcurtis@buffalo.edu
Phone: 716-859-4828

Specialty/Research Focus:
Cardiology; Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology

Research Summary:
As a clinician actively involved in patient care, I see patients in my office at 1020 Youngs Road, suite 110 in suburban Amherst, as well as in the Conventus Medical Office Building on the downtown Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. My specialty is clinical cardiac electrophysiology, which is the field of cardiology that deals with arrhythmias and implantable devices, such as pacemakers and defibrillators. We have assembled a team of cardiac electrophysiologists who work closely together, so that patients who are evaluated for cardiac arrhythmias in our practice have access to state-of-the-art procedures such as catheter ablation and implantable cardiac electrical devices. I was personally involved in the development of national guidelines for patient care in the treatment of atrial fibrillation from 2004 to 2011, and I am on the writing committee for the upcoming national guideline on ventricular arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. As the chair of the Department of Medicine at the University at Buffalo, I am involved in the education of residents and fellows as well as clinical research, in addition to my administrative responsibilities. My research focus is electrophysiology and pacing, including implantable device therapy and clinical trials in atrial fibrillation. I am the principal investigator on a study of heart failure patients with atrioventricular block entitled the Block HF Trial, the results of which have recently been published in the New England Journal of Medicine. I have been involved in clinical trials for over 25 years which have led to close to 300 publications. I am a member of a number of prominent professional organizations, and I am the current President of the Association of University Cardiologists. On a national level, I have held numerous national leadership roles, including serving as president of the Heart Rhythm Society. I have also chaired the American College of Cardiology’s Clinical Electrophysiology Committee and the Food and Drug Administration’s Circulatory System Devices Panel. I currently serve as an associate editor of one of the key journals in the field of cardiology, the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.