Dr. Gretchen Wells writes a lot of prescriptions and orders a lot of tests. But she says the most rewarding thing she dispenses is hope.
As director of Women's Heart Heath at UK HealthCare's Gill Heart Institute, Wells is tasked with helping Kentucky women enjoy longer, fuller lives with healthy hearts.
Prevention is a key part of that goal, especially in Kentucky where the mortality rate from heart disease is among the nation's highest. But Wells says there is so much more to tackle:The biology of heart disease is different in men and women, and so new ways of detection and treatment need to be explored to address those differences.More women are surviving breast cancer, only to develop heart problems because of their chemotherapy.Young women with pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia are at higher risk for heart disease later in life.
All of these and more are what bring Wells to the office every day, collaborating across campus to establish testing, identify biomarkers, and explore treatments tailored specifically to the needs of women with heart disease. She says, however, that the best part of her job is developing relationships with her patients.
"They teach me about family. They teach me about forgiveness. And they teach me about love,"... FULL STORY