With an eye on the future of heart care, interventional and structural cardiologist Sun Moon Kim, M.D., F.A.C.P. has joined FirstHealth Cardiology and the FirstHealth Valve Clinic at Reid Heart Center in Pinehurst.
Dr. Kim earned his undergraduate degree at George Institute of Technology and attended medical school at St. George’s University School of Medicine in the West Indies. At the University of Kentucky, he completed his internal medicine residency and cardiovascular disease fellowship.
Recently at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Dr. Kim completed a structural heart disease fellowship and received specialty training in transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), a non-invasive procedure for heart patients with inoperable aortic stenosis.
This condition is a narrowing of the aortic valve that prevents it from opening fully, thereby reducing blood flow and making the heart work harder.
The TAVR procedure, offered since 2013 at the FirstHealth Valve Clinic, replaces the aortic valve using a catheter-based approach, eliminating the need for open-heart surgery or cardiopulmonary bypass and resulting in a faster recovery. Dr. Kim is also trained in a number of other non-invasive, catheter-based, structural heart procedures.
“Structural heart disease, defined as problems with tissues and valves of the heart, is a relatively new field within cardiology,” said Dr. Kim. “Everyone who trains in this field wants to work in a program that’s financially sound with strong clinical and administrative support. While in Chapel Hill I learned of FirstHealth of the Carolinas’ program and after visiting, I saw firsthand how it excels in all these qualities.”
Dr. Kim is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine for internal medicine, cardiovascular disease and interventional cardiology; the National Boards of Echocardiography Adult ASCeXAM and the Certification Board of Nuclear Cardiology.
“I look forward to delivering quality care to the Sandhills and providing new procedures and different medical treatments that were once not available,” said Dr. Kim, who will also continue clinical research. “I am eager to join my colleagues in building a program that earns national acclaim.”
Dr. Kim will be a practicing cardiologist at Reid Heart Center as well as a member of the FirstHealth Valve Clinic team with Peter Ellman, M.D.; William Kitchens, M.D.; William Harris, M.D. and coordinator Kimberly LeGrand, R.N.
Through a collaborative approach, the Valve Clinic offers patients with complex valve disorders a one-stop arrangement of cardiovascular specialists.
The clinic’s goal is to deliver a focused, organized patient experience with comprehensive evaluation and clear communication about the disease severity and all therapeutic options. Valve disorders that may be evaluated include aortic stenosis, aortic regurgitation, pulmonary stenosis, mitral stenosis and mitral regurgitation.
Opened in 2011, Reid Heart Center is a state-of-the-art facility with six operating rooms with advanced technology, 71 patient rooms, 5 cardiac catherization rooms, bedside registration and the region’s most advanced electrophysiology equipment and procedures.
Also housed within Reid Heart Center are the Chest Center of the Carolinas and the FirstHealth Cardiovascular & Thoracic Center.
Dr. Kim and his wife have two daughters, ages 5 and 1, and look forward to planting roots in the area. “I think the Sandhills will be a wonderful place to excel professionally and personally, given the beauty of the area, its safety and my family’s affinity for golf.”
To schedule a cardiology appointment with Dr. Kim, please call (910) 715-7650. To learn more about the FirstHealth Valve Clinic, call (910) 715-1868, toll-free (855) 294-3278 or visit www.firsthealth.org/valve.