Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is the most common irregular or abnormal heart rhythm disorder, affecting millions of Americans today. Thankfully, more options to treat AFib are available than ever before. The Snyder Center for Comprehensive Atrial Fibrillation at The Valley Hospital is at the forefront of innovative and effective ways to treat and manage AFib through comprehensive, team-based clinical care and research.
In celebration of September being National Atrial Fibrillation Month, we would like to take this opportunity to introduce Stephanie Kochav, MD, MHS, the newest provider at the Snyder Center. Hear from Dr. Kochav below:
My name is Dr. Kochav, and I feel very privileged to be part of Valley’s team, where everyone's goals are focused on improving the effectiveness, quality, and efficiency of care for patients. I joined the team at Valley because of their collaborative, evidence-based approach to quality patient care.
Having trained at several other institutions, I bring my own unique perspective to the care of patients with AFib. Further, as a female electrophysiologist with a specialized focus in the care of women with cardiac arrhythmias, I hope to not only enhance the care of women with this disease but also to lead and contribute to gender-based research initiatives within the Snyder Center.
I have been treating patients with AFib since I was an intern nearly 10 years ago. I received my bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in New York and my medical degree from Yale School of Medicine in Connecticut. I completed my residency in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, a cardiology fellowship at Columbia University in New York, and a cardiac electrophysiology fellowship at New York-Presbyterian Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York. I am also board certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease.
My interests include all aspects of electrophysiology, including device-based therapy, tachyarrhythmias, and ablations. I have an additional special interest in the care of women with cardiac arrhythmias, including during pregnancy and the peripartum period. Historically, women have been underrepresented in cardiovascular clinical trials yet, gender-based differences in the management and care of cardiovascular disease, including arrhythmias, have been well established. I believe that identifying and appreciating these differences, which are themselves dynamic throughout the various stages of womens' lives – ranging from young adulthood, childbearing years, and perimenopause – is an important part of creating a personalized yet comprehensive care plan for our patients.
Since I was a resident at Massachusetts General Hospital, my philosophy of medicine has been the same - to provide high-quality care, with critical attention paid toward what the evidence and scientific literature supports, personalized for each individual patient and their goals.
Taking care of patients, often during the most difficult times of their lives, is a privilege and is always my focus. The problems that we take care of in electrophysiology can be confusing and overwhelming for patients. It is my job to explain each patient's problems at a level they can understand and then to devise a management plan that will work for each individual patient, and their loved ones, through shared decision-making.
What Patients Should Know About Me
I put myself in every one of my patient's shoes to get a sense for what they are going through. I understand how stressful the medical world can be, and I really try to personalize every patient visit and come up with a management plan together with the patient and their family. Having a mutual relationship of understanding and respect with my patients is of utmost importance to me. In the same vein, I am always available to my patients even beyond the scheduled patient visit.
To make an appointment with Dr. Kochav, please call 1-800-VALLEY 1.