February is American Heart Month, get to know our cardiologist Dr. James Pinney

Headshot of Dr. James Pinney

Dr. James Pinney
UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine/UCLA Medical Center
Residency, Internal Medicine, 2016 – 2019

University of California, San Francisco
School of Medicine
Class of 2016

Where are you from?
I was born in Santa Barbara but I did my undergrad at UCLA before medical school, so Los Angeles is pretty much my hometown now!

What did you earn your doctorate in?
Cardiac Tissue Engineering. I studied and developed technology to create microscopic biocompatible structures that could be injected into heart tissue after a heart attack. This helps to decrease the formation of scar tissue and promotes improved healing and better long-term heart function.

What attracted you to work at MLK Community Healthcare?
Although heart disease affects all populations, the burden of cardiovascular disease on underserved communities without sufficient access to adequate preventative care and healthcare resources has a disproportionate effect. Without appropriate early care and intervention, these populations often present with advanced presentations of common cardiovascular comorbidities that are rarely encountered in advantaged communities. To me, this presents a great challenge but an even greater opportunity to make a real difference in someone’s health and to improve their quality of life and longevity. I find it much more rewarding to be able to be a part of a patient’s first steps to regaining control over their health and working with them to find sometimes unorthodox or creative ways to diagnose and manage their heart disease, and I feel privileged that the patients served by MLK Community Healthcare trust me to help them face these challenges.

A quote from Dr. James Pinney: "A thirty-minute clinic visit with a patient who has not had the opportunity to access the healthcare system can be completely life changing for them compared to a quick check-up with a well-established patient who has had their disease and risk factors well controlled with unobstructed access to medical resources for years."

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