At the Rush Heart Center for Women – the first heart program in Chicago devoted exclusively to women – women with heart problems and those at risk for heart disease are diagnosed and treated by members of a team that includes cardiologists, a cognitive neurologist, nurse practitioners, and registered dietitians.

The Center focuses on the prevention of and early intervention for heart disease in women by helping patients make vital lifestyle changes that could help prevent future heart problems.

By bringing together physicians and clinicians across specialties, research disciplines, and clinical and research collaborators, we are committed to establishing new paradigms for providing clinical care and research methods for studying the intersection of heart disease to brain health and cognitive health.

The Overarching Goals of the Center are to:

  • Conduct clinical and scientific research on women and heart disease
  • Raise awareness of the impact of heart disease among women
  • Educate physicians, physicians in training, medical students, and nurses to recognize the warning signs and unique risk factors of heart disease in their female patients

What We Do

The RHCW Journal Club (JC) is a platform for innovation, collaboration, and the elevation of new and diverse voices and methodologies to study the intersection of Heart Disease to Cognitive and Brain Health, with a special focus on sex and gender considerations.

How We Got Started

Founded in 2014 by then Rush medical student Eric Silverman and Drs. Neelum Aggarwal and Annabelle Volgman, the RHCW JC developed a Cardio-Cognitive reading group for students rotating through the RHCW and Cardio Cognitive Clinic. The medical student trainees and their research-related projects were an integral part of the development of the reading group and website. Through these research projects, relevant articles were reviewed, and the RHCW JC became a generative space for interdisciplinary scholarship examining the nexus of cardiovascular, cerebrovascular, and Alzheimer’s Disease.

Since 2015, the medical student trainees have had ongoing success in obtaining consecutive summer Dean’s Awards for their research projects. These projects have been showcased on multiple platforms: through the annual Rush Research Forum, city-wide and national medical professional meetings, including the American Medical Association – Change Med Conferences, American Medical Association – Annual Conference, and American Heart Association meetings.

In 2021, the RHCW JC established the RHCW JC Blog, which features timely commentary on research related articles that showcase the intersection of Cardiovascular disease, Stroke, and Brain Health. These blogs also highlight the biology and science of sex/gender differences as they occur in Cardiovascular disease, Stroke, and Cognitive health and stress the importance of educating and enrolling women and under-represented populations to increase diversity and inclusion in clinical trials.

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