Claire Duvernoy and Frank Bogun — The language of love

In recognition of Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month, we’re bringing you love stories about members of our Cardiovascular team, including how they met and fell in love. We think you’ll enjoy getting to know the couples among our faculty and staff!

Bogun-DuvernoyFamily-sized

Claire Duvernoy, Frank Bogun and their children, Max and Lulu

Claire Duvernoy and Frank Bogun remember the exact day they met. They were at the University of Michigan Hospital in a busy afternoon clinic at Taubman Center — she as a second year cardiology fellow and he as a newly arrived advanced cardiac electrophysiology fellow.

It was Frank’s German characteristics (tall, slender build and wire-rim glasses) that made him stand out in the crowd for Claire, whose parents were from Swabia, a small southern region of Germany. Claire had also lived in Germany for a few years as a young child, where her father served in the United States Army after her parents became U.S. citizens. Back in the United States, Claire remembers speaking mostly Swabian — the regional dialect — in her home growing up. Continue reading

Pregnancy and heart disease: Making the impossible possible

Doctors advised Marfan Syndrome patient to adopt

SusanDeming

Cardiologists advised Susan Deming to avoid pregnancy because of a weak heart muscle due to a connective tissue disorder known as Marfan Syndrome.

When she was just 17 years old, Susan Deming of Highland, Michigan was advised by cardiologists not to have children. Deming had a condition known as Marfan Syndrome, a connective tissue disorder that meant she would have cardiomyopathy, a weak heart muscle. The risks included her aorta not being able to handle extra blood flow during pregnancy which could lead to an aneurysm causing death.

“At the time, I was young, shocked and didn’t ask questions,” says Deming, who stopped going to the doctor after that appointment.

At age 25, Deming and her husband wanted to start a family. They went to a different cardiologist at another facility hoping for a better outcome. The physician provided a similar outlook and advised the couple to adopt. Deming and her husband eventually adopted two children.

However, at age 30 Deming became pregnant. Her happiness soon became fear as many hospitals would not take her case and some even advised her to terminate the pregnancy. Deming refused and wanted to seek other advice. She was referred to an area dedicated to high risk pregnancies at the University of Michigan Health System, which had experience with pregnancy and heart disease. Here she met with Claire Duvernoy, M.D., a cardiologist who monitored her pregnancy very closely.

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What is patient and family centered care?

U-M professor Dwight Lang joins Patient Family Advisory Council to share story with others

Dwight's photoIf you have ever been a patient or caregiver, then you’ve probably been faced with the uncertainty that comes with encountering unfamiliar medical terminology and procedures. In fact, it might have seemed like your doctor barely discussed your surgery with you or didn’t allow time for your family to ask questions about your options. For most patients and family members, this makes the medical process rather intimidating.

Fortunately, healthcare is moving away from this patient-directed approach and shifting toward a patient-centric model. Patient and Family Centered Care (PFCC) is a healthcare approach that works to remove the barriers between medical professional and medical patient by truly valuing the concerns, opinions and voices of patients and their families.

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