A Brief Overview of the Cardiovascular System

Cardiovascular System pic
Cardiovascular System
Image: innerbody.com

Dr. Marc Gerdisch received his medical education and training at Loyola University’s Stritch School of Medicine and the Loyola University Medical Center, respectively. In 2006, Dr. Marc Gerdisch joined Franciscan Health in Indianapolis, Indiana, as chief of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery and co-director of the hospital’s Heart Valve Center. Dr. Gerdisch is also a senior partner with Cardiac Surgery Associates.

The cardiovascular system, sometimes defined as the heart and circulatory system, is responsible for delivering blood to tissues and organs throughout the body. In addition to the heart, the cardiovascular system is comprised of the blood vessels (veins and arteries) and approximately five liters of blood. The heart, essentially a pump, circulates oxygen-carrying blood in a loop through the vast network of veins and arteries to all areas of the body and back to the lungs for re-oxygenation. In addition to oxygen, blood vessels are responsible for moving nutrients, hormones, and cellular waste.

As one of the body’s most vital systems, any injury or disease affecting cardiovascular performance should be treated with the utmost care. A heart attack is one of the most well-known, dangerous afflictions that can strike the cardiovascular system. Other conditions that can have negative cardiovascular effects include congenital heart disease and cardiomyopathy.


New Cardiovascular Surgery Repairs Damaged Tissues in Patients’ Hearts

Dr. Marc Gerdisch pic
Dr. Marc Gerdisch
Image: franciscanhealth.org

A senior partner with Cardiac Surgery Associates, Dr. Marc Gerdisch is an award-winning surgeon who has pioneered numerous groundbreaking heart surgeries. Named among America’s Top Doctors by Castle Connelly from 2009 to 2015, Dr. Marc Gerdisch was the first doctor in the world to use Extracellular Matrix, a patch created from pig intestines, to reconstruct damaged tissues in patients such as Sherry Tucker.

Tucker has lived with a defect in her heart’s aortic valve. An initial surgery to implant an artificial replacement valve inside her heart did not rectify her condition.

Tucker was one of the first patients to have Extracellular Matrix corrective heart surgery. Since having it, she has gone back to riding her bike every day without struggling with shortness of breath.

The ground-breaking use of Extracellular Matrix is set to change the way heart repairs are performed. The strong and durable material allows the body to naturally regenerate cells and to repair damaged tissue, without having to take anti-rejection drugs, deal with scar tissue, or undergo repeat surgeries.