Elizabeth Whitlock, MD, MS, Awarded FAER Mentored Research Training Grant

Congratulations to Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care Clinical Instructor Elizabeth Whitlock, MD, MS, for receiving a Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research (FAER) Mentored Research Training Grant. Dr. Whitlock’s study uses epidemiologic data from the Health and Retirement Study (a publicly-funded study of aging in America which has followed over 37,000 elders throughout late life) to look at the cognitive change people experience both before and after heart procedures: coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI, or "stenting"), two ways of opening clogged coronary arteries.  There has been a lot of attention in the popular media, borne out by some studies (unfortunately, mostly with methodological problems), that suggests CABG causes cognitive decline, which can be serious, even though long-term cardiac outcomes after CABG tend to be better.  Dr. Whitlock is using these data to remedy some of the methodological problems - like inadequate control groups, only short-term follow-up, and failure to adjust for pre-procedure cognitive change - and explore whether there is evidence for disproportionate cognitive change after CABG in a real-world population-based setting.