UAB cardiologist Vijay Misra dead at age 51

Noted cardiologist and director of the UAB Heart and Vascular Center Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory died suddenly June 4, 2011.
Vijay Misra

Vijay Misra, M.D., noted cardiologist and director of the University of Alabama at Birmingham Heart and Vascular Center Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory, died suddenly June 4, 2011. He was 51.

A memorial service will be held in the Birmingham Botanical Gardens Ireland Room from 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 7.

Misra joined UAB in 1998 as assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiovascular Disease and was appointed director of the hospital’s cardiac catheterization lab in 2005; he was named professor in 2009. He also held faculty appointments in the Department of Neurology and the Comprehensive Diabetes Center.

“Vijay Misra was an outstanding physician, educator and person,” said Ray Watts, M.D., senior vice president for medicine at UAB and dean of the School of Medicine. “Vijay’s leadership, both at UAB and internationally, and his contributions to the body of scientific knowledge, to the training of future physicians and the care he gave patients, garnered the utmost respect from his friends and colleagues. He will be greatly missed.”

Misra distinguished himself in clinical interventional cardiovascular research. In addition to active collaborations in numerous multi-center projects, Misra was a leader in single-center clinical studies. He made significant contributions to the development of several novel procedures and devices in interventional cardiovascular/endovascular therapy, including the first to use the Tandem Heart LV support device to perform high-risk aortic valvuloplasty for aortic stenosis on a human and development of the cone crush bifurcation stenting technique.

Clinically, Misra is known for successfully performing the most complex and high-risk percutaneous coronary interventions, cardiac structural/valvular, cerebrovascular and peripheral vascular interventions, especially in patients for whom there are no other treatment options. Under his leadership in the Heart and Vascular Center, UAB has been the leading referral center in Alabama and the region for percutaneous valvular heart disease therapy.

Misra’s legacy is not limited to UAB. He initiated and led a regional educational organization in Alabama called the Vulcan Interventional Cardiovascular Society. VICS provides a quarterly forum for exchange and educational presentations among the region’s practicing interventional cardiologists.

Misra authored or co-authored numerous original articles in national and international professional journals, including New England Journal of Medicine, Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, Cardiology, Stroke, Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation, Obesity, and Diabetes Care. He was active in professional societies, including as a fellow in both the American College of Cardiology and the Society for Cardiac Angiography and Interventions and as a member of the American Heart Association, the AHA Stroke Section, and American Society of Artificial Internal Organs.

Misra earned his medical degree in 1982 from Osmania Medical College, Hyderabad, A.P., India, and completed his residency at Nassau County Medical Center in East Meadow, N.Y., where he was chief resident. Misra also completed a fellowship in cardiology at Nassau County Medical Center and in interventional cardiology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Prior to joining the UAB faculty, Misra was an assistant professor of medicine and director of interventional cardiology at Vanderbilt.

Misra is survived by his wife, Mary Jo, daughter Drisana, a junior at Yale University, son Jivin, a freshman at Northwestern University, and son Hans, a freshman at Indian Springs School.