expert type icon EXPERT

M. Denton Stam

Cardiothoracic Surgeon

Dr. M. Denton Stam is a cardiothoracic surgeon practicing in Fort Smith , Arkansas. Dr. Stam specializes in surgical procedues of vital organs in the chest such as the heart, lungs, esophagus and more. As a cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr. Stam typically treats conditions like heart disease and lung disease. This class of surgeon can also include cardiac surgeons, cardiovascular surgeons, congenital heart surgeons and general thoracic surgeons.
M. Denton Stam
  • Fort Smith, Arkansas
  • New York Medical College
  • Accepting new patients

My 4 year old son recently has an irregular heartbeat. Would he need a transplant in the future?

That is a hard question to answer. It depends on what the underlying cause is. I would have to know that to give a reasonable reply. Most transplants are well tolerated with long-term READ MORE
That is a hard question to answer. It depends on what the underlying cause is. I would have to know that to give a reasonable reply.
Most transplants are well tolerated with long-term survival, but require very strict medication reliability. Rejection of a new heart is rarely fatal and can be treated by medicines. Matching a new heart well up front is critical.

Good luck,

Dr. Stam

What is the difference between a cardiologist and cardiothoracic surgeon?

Cardiologists manage and control heart disease. They prescribe medicine and order tests to evaluate the patient. Some, called interventional cardiologists, actually do cardiac READ MORE
Cardiologists manage and control heart disease. They prescribe medicine and order tests to evaluate the patient. Some, called interventional cardiologists, actually do cardiac catheterizations by going into the arteries and using dye to visualize the arteries around the heart. If narrowed they can "balloon" them open or place a "stent" to prop open the artery. In some cases, they refer the patient to a surgeon. This is the cardiothoracic surgeon. They actually cut open the chest to do cardiac bypass surgery.
They then manage the patient until out of the hospital, at which time the cardiologist takes back over long-term management.

What could be the reason for low hemoglobin after a bypass surgery?

Blood loss. Most people lose about 4 points. Increase iron consumption. Lean red meat 4 oz is absorbed best- 24%. Do once or twice over a week. Spinach or broccoli both only 4% READ MORE
Blood loss. Most people lose about 4 points. Increase iron consumption. Lean red meat 4 oz is absorbed best- 24%. Do once or twice over a week. Spinach or broccoli both only 4% unless you eat protein or vitamin C- goes to 7% then. Either way, get a vitamin supplement.

What causes increased heart rate in a pregnant woman?

She is providing blood to two bodies now. This is acceptable. Discuss with your obstetrician next visit.

I have chest soreness and radiating pain. Is this due to pleurisy or costochondritis?

Hard to tell, but I would get a physician to see you and at least get an EKG. You should at least have the cardiac side checked out as it is a possibility.

Caffeine and heart surgery?

Would be better to cut down if possible. Check your blood levels and supplement iron if lower. Gives less chance of needing a transfusion. Regular vitamin with iron is a good start. READ MORE
Would be better to cut down if possible. Check your blood levels and supplement iron if lower. Gives less chance of needing a transfusion. Regular vitamin with iron is a good start.

Valve repair success

Repair is most often done with the mitral valve when it has a significant leak. However, if it is stenotic (narrowed) most often it is replaced. Surgery on the aortic valve is READ MORE
Repair is most often done with the mitral valve when it has a significant leak. However, if it is stenotic (narrowed) most often it is replaced. Surgery on the aortic valve is most often done by replacement. The determination of replace versus repair depends upon the structure of
the mitral valve and whether some of the surrounding tissues can be fixed to allow the valve to function more normally. A non-invasive echocardiogram is necessary to evaluate the valves prior to the decision and can be discussed with you before surgery. I usually show the images to the patient's in my office. Repair is done by removing redundant tissue or tightening the surrounding structures. In some cases this is not possible, thus the valve would be replaced. Repair, leaving the patient's native valve in place is preferable with better long-term outcomes.

Regards,
M. Denton Stam, MD MBA

Heart transplant question

Rejection is usually slow. Patients should have routine biopsies by the transplant team to check microscopically for rejection. When it occurs, it can often be stopped by additional READ MORE
Rejection is usually slow. Patients should have routine biopsies by the transplant team to check microscopically for rejection. When it occurs, it can often be stopped by additional medicine.
Hopefully this answers your question.