Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Clinic

Your genes impact every aspect of your cardiovascular system, from the strength of the blood vessels to the way cells in the heart communicate.

Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Clinic

Many cardiac disorders can be inherited, including arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms) and cardiomyopathies (heart muscle diseases).

At the Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Clinic, we have a multidisciplinary team with years of experience in cardiology, genetics, electrophysiology, heart failure care, surgery, and imaging that will help identify and treat inherited cardiac disorders to help you and your family live a healthier life.

How do my genes affect my heart?

A genetic variation (mutation) in a single gene can affect the likelihood of developing heart disease for some people and in certain diseases.  Although not all cardiac conditions have a known genetic cause, reviewing your personal and family history can help to identify if you’re at risk for an inherited heart condition if appropriate for testing.

Where it’s available, using genetic testing for specific cardiovascular diseases has become part of the standard of care.  Recommendations exist for genetic testing and genetic counseling from the American College of Cardiology, Heart Rhythm Society, Heart Failure Society, American Heart Association, American Association of Thoracic Surgeons, and others.

Which Cardiac Diseases Do We Treat?

Abnormal Heart Rhythm Disorders

  • Brugada syndrome
  • Catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia (CPVT)
  • Long QT syndrome
  • Short QT syndrome

Cardiomyopathies/Heart Muscle Disease

  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
  • Dilated Cardiomyopathy
  • Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy/Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy
  • Left Ventricular Non-Compaction
  • Restrictive Cardiomyopathy
  • Cardiac Sarcoidosis
  • Transthyretin (TTR) Amyloidosis

Neuromuscular Disease- Related Cardiomyopathy

  • Duchene and Becker Muscular Dystrophy
  • Friedreich’s Ataxia
  • Myotonic Dystrophy

Connective Tissue Diseases

  • Familial thoracic aortic aneurysm/dissection
  • Loeys-Dietz Syndrome
  • Marfan Syndrome
  • Vascular Ehlers Danlos syndrome

Other Conditions

  • Familial Hypercholesterolemia

What to expect when visiting the Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Clinic?

There are several signs that can be seen in your personal or family history that may suggest an inherited heart condition. Part of your visit to the Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Clinic includes a review of your personal and family history with a board-certified genetic counselor to identify any clues of a genetic heart disease.

Signs might include:

  • Unexplained cardiac arrest(s) or sudden death
  • Unexplained syncope (fainting)
  • Syncope (fainting) with exercise or emotional distress
  • Unexplained seizures, or seizures with normal neurological evaluation
  • Having a big heart
  • Having a weak heart
  • Implanted cardioverter defibrillator ICD or Pacemaker  implanted before  50 years old
  • Heart failure before 60 years old
  • Heart transplant before 60 years
  • Early “heart attack”, coronary artery disease, or stroke – for men under 55 years old, women under 65 years old
  • Aortic aneurysm or dissection before 50 years old
  • Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
  • Unexplained accidents (i.e. drowning in someone who is a strong swimmer, single car accident, etc.)
  • Untreated LDL (“bad”) cholesterol greater than 190 mg/dl

At your initial appointment, you will meet with a cardiologist and genetic counselor. We will review your medical history and family history to determine what other tests may be needed to establish the diagnosis and/or tailor your management.

Do I need genetic testing?

Part of your initial visit to the Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Program can include genetic testing. Genetic testing has become an important part of management and diagnosis for cardiovascular conditions. If a disease-causing change is identified, it may lead to tailored interventions, like medicines or screening. Identifying a disease-causing change also benefits your family - who needs monitoring and who doesn’t.

Locations

Hartford: 85 Jefferson, Suite 206

West Hartford: 65 Memorial Drive, Suite 405

Bridgeport: 2979 Main Street

Milford: 205 Sub Way, Suite 101

Norwalk: 40 Cross Street

How to Make an Appointment

Appointments can be made by calling 860.972.1212

Our Team

Adaya Weissler-Snir, MD

Adaya Weissler-Snir, MD, Medical Director

Specializes in Inherited Cardiovascular Disorders and Electrophysiology

Emily Smith

Emily Smith, MS, LCGC

Genetic Counselor

Our Inherited Cardiovascular Disease specialists

Name Specialties Location
Arora, Sabeena, MD 860.972.1212
  • Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Internal Medicine
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  • Hartford
Cheema, Mohiuddin, MD 860.696.5520
  • Cardiac Surgery
  • Endovascular Surgery
  • Vascular Surgery
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  • Hartford
Gifford, Edward D., MD, RPVI 860.522.4158
  • Vascular Surgery
  • Endovascular Surgery
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  • Hartford
  • Glastonbury
  • Mystic
  • Norwich
  • Waterford
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Hagberg, Robert Carl, MD 860.696.5520
  • Cardiac Surgery
  • Endovascular Surgery
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  • Hartford
Hashim, Sabet W., MD, FACS 860.696.5520
  • Cardiac Surgery
  • Hartford
  • Bridgeport
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Jain, Akhilesh Kumar, MD, FACS 860.522.4158
  • Vascular Surgery
  • Endovascular Surgery
  • General Surgery
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  • Hartford
  • Norwich
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Jaiswal, Abhishek, MD 860.972.1212
  • Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Internal Medicine
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  • Hartford
  • Bridgeport
  • Hartford
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Shah, Parth S., MD, FACS 860.223.0800
  • Vascular Surgery
  • Endovascular Surgery
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  • Plainville
  • Farmington
  • Southington
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Weissler-Snir, Adaya, MD, CCEP 860.972.1506
  • Cardiac Electrophysiology
  • Cardiovascular Medicine
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  • Hartford
  • Hartford
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