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EACVI Training Grants Winners

Check out the experiences of our past winners!



Discover the portraits of the 2018 winners

Dr. Ozge Tok 

Title of the training: CMR training programme

Year of the research: 2018

Host institution: Bristol Heart Institute, MRI Unit, Bristol, UK

After I finished my cardiology residency in Istanbul/Turkey, I decided to be a cardiac imager, and I was always dreaming of multimodality cardiovascular imaging. Most of the people whom I told my dream, mentioned how difficult and nearly impossible it was but I never gave up and kept on dreaming. After echocardiography, 3D echocardiograpy and interventional echocardiography experineces in different centers, I was focused on cardiac CT (for coronary CT angiography and structural heart diseases) and had the chance to learn it in very experienced different centers with great supervisors during the year 2017.My next step was cardiac MRI, but I really had no idea how to achieve it in a high volume and scientific center with experienced cardiologists, radiologists and physicians. It is not so easy to find such a center and to afford it at my stage of career.

Actually my academic life changed after EuroEcho 2016 in Leipzig, because I was able to meet current and previous EACVI presidents, HIT chairs and great HIT family with all ambassadors from all over the world. I met a lot of collegues, who had the same passion just like me. They were all so helpful and supportive that I really felt that I am a member of this great EACVI family. After a short time period, I was elected as a HIT Committee member and HIT ambassador of Turkey for Cardiovascular Imaging by EACVI. All of my friends from HIT group, who knew that I want to train CMR encouraged me to apply for EACVI grant. I talked with some friends who were awarded with EACVI and ESC grants previously and they encouraged me too much. I am also very lucky that my professors in Turkey supported me about the idea too much. Finally I told myself ‘Yes Özge, go for it!. I can say it was one of the happiest moments of my life when I learnt that I won the grant! Now I am able to do my training in one of the best centers with a great, experienced supervisor. My dream came true! I suggest all my friends to be a member of EACVI and if possible HIT member and keep in touch with their own ambassadors and even with us, so that we can help them and answer all the questions they have.

Thanks to EACVI and EACVI HIT family for being a ‘real’ warm, supportive and encouraging family.

And my last words for my dear friends are: ‘Decide, go for it and never stop dreaming!’

Dr. Alexios Antonopoulos

Title of the training: Multi-modality imaging training in Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) and Computed tomography (CT) for clinical and research applications

Year of the research: 2018

Host institution: University of Oxford Centre for Clinical Magnetic Resonance Research, Oxford, UK

I am fascinated by the recent advances in imaging technology, which have rendered feasible the detection of subtle cardiovascular disease, and the coupling of imaging phenotype with tissue biology. I have previously received training in cardiac CT and developed a novel CT-method for the detection of coronary inflammation by the imaging of perivascular fat. My goal now is to further advance my imaging skills and be trained in CMR imaging. Receiving training in a world-leading institution (OCMR, University of Oxford, UK) is expected to offer me significant experience in the clinical and research applications of CMR and the use of cross-modality imaging for cardiac disease phenotyping. I am indeed thankful to the EACVI for offering me this unique opportunity.

Discover the portraits of past EACVI Training Grants Winners 

Training Grant winner 2017

Dr. Hani Mahmoud

Title of the training: Advanced Stress echocardiography for assessment of IHD and valvular heart disease
Year of the research: 2017
Host institution: Royal Brompton Hospital, London, UK

 

Dr. Fabrizio Ricci

Title of the training: CMR training programme
Year of the research: 2017
Host institution: Barts Heart Centre, St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, UK

Training Grant winner 2016

Dr. Loizos Savvas (Greece)

Title of the training: Cardiovascular Imaging
Year of the research: 2016
Host institution: Imperial College London, UK

His experience:

During the last few years, evolution in cardiovascular imaging has significantly changed the way cardiovascular diseases are assessed. Novel modalities have come into the front page, offering new possibilities to diagnosis and management of heart diseases, while imaging has today a pivotal role in structural heart disease treatment. In the era of multimodality imaging, the modern cardiologist has to be familiar with these new techniques and how to combine their advantages in order to provide better patient care.

The EACVI training grant offered me the opportunity to get ad-hoc training in advanced echocardiographic techniques and familiarise with other imaging modalities at Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College London, UK.

During the 6-month period of my training I practiced and reported stress echocardiography for ischaemia investigation but also valvular disease and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy dynamic obstruction assessment. I also learned the principles and practiced three dimension echocardiography and speckle tracking imaging, both for clinical and research purposes. The large variety, complexity and rarity of clinical cases as well as the excellence and expertise in the way they are assessed at Hammersmith Hospital’s echo lab doubtlessly enhanced my training in echocardiography.

Furthermore, I was involved in cardiac MRI and cardiac CT sessions, familiarising with these modalities and getting training in indications, limitations, technical approach and reporting in a broad spectrum of diseases including cardiomyopathies, coronary artery disease and cardiac masses.

Last but not least, I had the chance to participate in research projects on non-invasive coronary artery disease investigation, contrast echocardiography and imaging of patients that underwent transcatheter aortic valve implantation.

In conclusion, the EACVI training grant allowed me to get in-depth and refined training in echocardiography and advanced echo techniques but also introduced me to multimodality approach of cardiovascular disease in clinical practice.

Dr. Tomaz Podlesnikar (Slovenia)

Title of the training: CMR training fellowship
Year of the training: 2016
Host institution: Clinical Research and Imaging Centre Bristol, UK3

His experience:

After having the honour of being awarded the EACVI Training Grant, I’ve spent 6 months training in Cardiac Magnetic Resonance (CMR) at Bristol Heart Institute (UK) under supervision of Dr Chiara Bucciarelli-Ducci. My background CMR knowledge before coming to Bristol was very limited. However, with most generous help of my supervisor as well as other consultants, fellows and radiographers at Bristol Heart Institute (BHI), I could progress quickly. As a regional referral centre with almost 3000 CMR scans annually, BHI offered me a great opportunity to get acquainted with diverse cardiac pathologies, ranging from cardiomyopathies, coronary heart disease, congenital heart disease to vascular diseases. I’ve learned how to use all standard CMR techniques, including stress CMR (both vasodilator and dobutamine) and parametric imaging (T1 and T2 mapping). Scans were performed on an outpatient basis as well as in more acute setting, for hospitalized patients, and difficult clinical scenarios were lively debated in multidisciplinary team meetings. In 6 months I’ve gained considerable amount of knowledge and experience, fructifying in successfully accomplished EuroCMR exam. I’ve independently  pre-reported over 150 CMR scans, which were then checked together with the consultants – this was in fact one of the most educational aspects of my training. I plan to keep on progressing in the CMR field and apply for the Level 3 CMR certification in the near future.

I am deeply grateful to Dr Chiara Bucciarelli-Ducci and the whole CMR team at BHI, for a truly unique professional and life experience. The period in Bristol was certainly one of the most influential steps in my career and I am now well equipped to start CMR at the cardiology department in my home institution. My final thanks go to the EACVI for enabling me to work with and learn from such outstanding people!

Training Grant winner 2015

Dr. Blazej Michalski (Poland)

Title of the training:  Evaluation of heart function with the use of advanced echocardiographic techniques, CMR and cardiac-CT.
Year of the research: 2015
Host institution: Medical Imaging Research Center, University Hospital Gasthuisberg, Leuven, Belgium

His experience:

I had a pleasure and honour to win the 6 month training grant of EACVI in 2014. I did my grant in Department of Cardiology, Gusthuisber –Leuven, Belgium with the supervision of  Professor Jens Uwe Voigt.  During my internship which started at the 4th of October 2015 and was prolonged till 13th of September 2016 I was working in the research echocardiographic  laboratory. I have learned how to interpret the results of strain and strain rate, especially in the aspect of dyssynchrony and scar evaluation. I worked with the software for strain analysis from different vendors. The possibility of being part of Professor Jens Uwe Voigt research team gave me the opportunity to learn how to design the research study, conducted it properly and interpret the statistical results.  One of the results of my internship is a publication “Can we predict improvement of secondary MR after CRT?

Results from a PREDICT-CRT sub-study.” During my internship I also did a Master degree in Advanced Medical Imaging at Katolische Universitate of Leuven. I would like to thank you to EACVI and Professor Jens Uwe Voigt for this opportunity to realize my dreams and to learn a lot.  It was also an unique experience in the aspect of meeting new people and having incredible friends.

Dr. Doralisa Morrone (Italy)
Doralisa Morrone.png

Title of the training: Contrast echo in the setting of ischemic heart disease
Year of the training: 2015
Host institution: Royal Brompton Hospital, London, UK

Her experience:

After having the honor of being awarded the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI) Training Grant, I had a unique professional and social experience. I have conducted my training in advanced echocardiographic techniques at the well-known EchocardiographyDepartment, led by Prof. Roxy Senior. The main focus of my training was on advanced echocardiographic techniques and their applications in patients with Ischemic heart disease. My interest was particularly on contrast echocardiography perfusion to assess coronary microcirculation in ischemic patients. However during this year I was fully trained also in advanced 2D/3D-echocardiography including3D LV function analysis, speckle tracking and Tissue Doppler deformation analysis, stress-echocardiography and perfusion with contrast infusion. In addition I studied applications of non invasive cardiac imaging techniques in valvular heart disease patients and heart failure patients. Within a very well organized professional structure, I learned during weakly journal clubs and during daily practice how to perform standard non invasive procedure in this particular subset of patients. After this intense training I was be able to develop the necessary skills to introduce these techniques and new research projects in my institution. Since 2015 I have also partecipate to several research projects with a still ongoing collaboration with Prof.Roxy Senior. Iam most grateful to Professor Senior and to the Echocardiography Department team for the invaluable contribution for a decisive step head in my career. EACVI training Grant has represented for me a fantastic work and life experience, having the privilege to meet and learn from outstanding people.

Dr. Elena Surkova (Russia) 
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Title of the training: 2D and 3D echo deformation imaging
Year of the training: 2015
Host institution: Department of Cardiology at the University of Padua, Italy
Her experience: Overall the host institution and the programme of training were in full agreement with my expectations and my view on my future career evolution. The proposed training and research activities were comprehensive and extremely extensive.

EACVI Training Grant was a very important step in my professional development, which helped me to achieve new professional goals, motivated me to apply for new research grants and gain new clinical and research experience so new technologies could be implemented in my home country.

As a final result of my training Grant I am planning to obtain the EACVI Accreditation on TTE: register through passing the exam in December 2015 during Euro Echo Imaging Congress and submit the EACVI log-book and case list.

Research activities undertaken in Padua had an important impact on my future career progression. I was invited to give several master classes and presentations at the 5thInternational Forum of Young Cardiologists in Russian Federation in March 2016 (Supported by the ESC Working Group Cardiologists of Tomorrow), which will allow me to share my experience with young colleagues from my home country and elsewhere.

During the next year I am going to concentrate on the research project investigating the cardiac remodeling, possible triggers and outcomes in functional tricuspid regurgitation at the University of Padua (supported by the ESC Research Grant 2015). Upon completion of the project I am planning to set up a research group in my home institution concentrating on development and evaluation of novel imaging techniques in cardiology and further develop international collaboration.

My future career plans include obtaining more senior position in my home institution, probably taking overall responsibility for imaging techniques at my clinic. I may be also considering setting up a new clinic as a spin-off company probably jointly with the University, which would potentially give me more flexibility in conducting research and treating patient.