Top Doctors 2021: Like Solving a Puzzle

The process of diagnosis intrigues Dr. Jeanne Poole

By Edited and Condensed by Rob Smith

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May 17, 2021

This article originally appeared in the May/June 2021 issue of Seattle Magazine.

Name: Dr. Jeanne Poole

Practice and Hospital Affiliation: Cardiac Electrophysiology at UW Medicine Heart Institute, University of Washington Medical Center 

Why did you pick your specialty?  Arrhythmia diagnosis can be like a puzzle, requiring careful evaluation with many diagnostic tools to determine the best course of therapy. Electrophysiology is a technology-driven field, and has been at the forefront of using engineering technology [monitors, pacemakers, defibrillators], imaging technologies [X-ray, CT scan, MRI scan, heart-mapping technology], and catheter ablation technology to diagnose and treat rhythm disorders.

What do you wish people knew about your specialty? Electrophysiology is a subspecialty field that evaluates patients with arrhythmias, including some of the important public health problems such as atrial fibrillation and sudden cardiac arrest. UW Medicine has leading experts in arrhythmia management and research. Electrophysiology physicians are helping to advance the use of digital technology including personal devices to monitor for arrhythmias [e.g., smart phone/smart watch/wearable heart rhythm monitors] and the use of machine learning/artificial intelligence to help understand best practices for patient care.

How will the pandemic change your practice? The pandemic has catapulted forward the use of advanced digital technology for personal patient care, minimizing the need for patients to travel and be seen in the hospital/clinic. This approach is well-suited to many of the problems faced in arrhythmia diagnosis. Many direct-to-consumer products are now available, which provides opportunity to understand the best health care application of these devices. Undoubtedly such products will continue to be developed and physicians/scientists will need to incorporate these technologies into clinical trials and health outcomes research.   

This feature is a part of our 21st annual list of the region’s best physicians. View the list here. 

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