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Karen Langston started working for Hillcrest HealthCare System in the 1970s.

“I worked as a unit secretary for a few years, left for a while then came back in 1977 and started the radiologist technologist program that was offered at the time,” said Langston.

Upon graduating from the program in 1980, Langston began working in the Catheterization lab at Hillcrest Medical Center. When Oklahoma Heart Institute opened in 2009 with a new cath lab, she moved over there where she worked until her retirement in December 2018.

“There were only five employees working in the cath... Read More »

During the summer of 2018, Rebecca Ring’s cardiologist determined that she needed to have open heart surgery to have a valve replaced. Due to Ring’s religious beliefs, surgeons were reluctant to do the surgery because she does not accept blood transfusions.

“The surgeon who initially agreed to do the surgery wanted to do traditional open heart surgery where they make the big incision down the sternum to replace one of my valves,” said Ring. “The thought of this was overwhelming since it was just to replace one valve, especially since there was mention of also replacing my aorta... Read More »

When Leota Schlesier started experiencing symptoms that were out of the ordinary, she knew she needed to visit her primary care physician.

“My heart was racing, I had chest pains and shortness of breath,” said Schlesier. “I visited my primary care physician and he had me wear a heart monitor for 30 days. It didn’t show anything significant but he knew there was something going on because of my symptoms.”

Due to the fact that Schlesier had also had episodes of feeling faint, her primary care physician ordered a carotid artery ultrasound. “When I was leaving work on a few... Read More »

Oklahoma Heart Institute provides comprehensive endocrinology care. By focusing on the needs of the patients, endocrinologists can develop individualized treatment plans. Dr. Cristin Bruns, endocrinologist at Oklahoma Heart Institute, is telling us more about the types of diseases that fall under the umbrella of endocrinology care and how she approaches diabetes care.

“As an endocrinologist, I treat individuals with hormonal disorders such as diabetes mellitus and bone diseases, as well as disorders of the thyroid, parathyroid, adrenal and pituitary and reproductive glands,” said... Read More »

For most of her life, Susan Apker has had cardiovascular issues.

“When I was three years old, I had open heart surgery to repair a ventricular septal defect (VSD),” said Apker. “I had a complete heart block during that surgery and have had pacemakers since, so I am consistently seeing a cardiologist.”

Apker has been seeing Dr. Wayne Leimbach, medical director at Oklahoma Heart Institute, for more than 10 years. “When I first started seeing Dr. Leimbach, I was in the beginning stages of heart failure,” said Apker. “In the spring of 2018, he referred me to Dr. Allen Cheng,... Read More »

Heart attacks in younger people are becoming increasingly more common, especially in women. This could likely be due to the increase in the prevalence of the risks factor for heart attack and stroke in young adults, according to Wayne Leimbach, M.D., medical director of Oklahoma Heart Institute.

“This was predicted to happen more than 15 years ago due to the obesity epidemic in our country,” Leimbach said.

Smoking also contributes to the upsurge because there has been an increase in the amount of women who smoke. Additionally, there has been a rise in consumption of fast food... Read More »

Please join us in welcoming Wendell Williams, M.D., our new cardiologist at Oklahoma Heart Institute. He is now seeing patients at our Muskogee clinic. Williams, who is originally from St. Louis, is a third generation doctor and led a cardiology practice in St. Louis for more than 20 years before moving to Jefferson City. For the last six years, Williams has called Muskogee home and he is now looking forward to his future with Oklahoma Heart Institute.

Dr. Williams is a cardiologist who specializes in the evaluation, diagnosis, treatment and education of congestive heart failure,... Read More »

Jenn Jordan has struggled with her weight since she was a teenager. For more than 25 years, she was consistently trying to figure out what to do to get to a healthy weight for her body.

“I was always the heaviest one in my family, my group of friends or just a group of people in general and it was very frustrating,” said Jordan.

Jordan was very aware that her weight was an issue. “I was always trying to find a program that would work for me,” said Jordan. “When you are carrying this weight around with you all the time, you know it’s a problem.”

Trendy diet plans were... Read More »

Nora Connelly had tried what felt like every diet program on the market. While out shopping with her mother in Utica Square, she ran into an old family friend. Upon seeing her, Connelly was shocked at her appearance.

“When I ran into her, she was half the person that I’ve always known her to be,” said Connelly. “When I asked her what she had done to lose so much weight, she started telling me about the Health Management Resources (HMR) program that is offered through the Weight Loss & Wellness Center at Oklahoma Heart Institute.”

At that point in her life, Connelly knew... Read More »

84-year-old Jack Hoyt, a retired research chemist from southern Kansas, has been a Hillcrest patient for quite some time. Despite living more than 125 miles northwest of Tulsa, both Hoyt and his wife see primary care physicians at Utica Park Clinic. Hoyt’s son, Dr. Brad Hoyt, is an internist with Utica Park Clinic.

Hoyt has had two major heart procedures done at Oklahoma Heart Institute.

“My first procedure was a quadruple bypass in 2008,” said Hoyt. “During the procedure and hospital stay, I received excellent care. Then in July of 2018, I had a routine chest x-ray and was... Read More »