Dr. Royce Dean Yount grew up in New Orleans, attending St. Martin’s School and later earning his undergraduate degree in biology and psychology at Vanderbilt University. His mother was, and still is, a physician practicing family medicine in New Orleans, which led him naturally to attend medical school at nearby Louisiana State University. “She showed me how medicine will always present new and interesting challenges,” Dr. Yount says. He remained at LSU for his residency in internal medicine, and he completed a fellowship in interventional cardiology there in 1998.
Dr. Yount chose to focus on cardiology specifically for its challenges. “I found it was probably one of the harder things to do, so it got my interest,” he says. As a practicing interventional cardiologist for the past 16 years, he has treated patients, performed medical research, and benefited from the development of medical tools and procedures — like the now-ubiquitous heart stent.
Dr. Yount concentrates on hospital and clinic work, doing patient rounds. He spends at least two days each week in the hospital’s catheterization laboratory, or cath lab, where he performs diagnostic tests to determine patients’ medical issues and the best course of treatment. “This is where I do most of my work,” Dr. Yount says.
The doctor often treats patients diagnosed with coronary artery disease, or narrowing of the small blood vessels that supply oxygen to the heart. “If we catch it early enough, we can rely on preventative measures,” Dr. Yount says. He cites healthy weight maintenance, diabetes management and smoking cessation as three lifestyle changes that can lessen the risk of the disease. “If we get to the point where there is significant blockage, we can treat that with stents,” he says.
Stents — small, tube-shaped structural supports that can be placed in narrow arteries to widen them and increase blood flow — represented a significant advancement in interventional cardiology at their advent in the mid-1980s, says Dr. Yount. “It’s really opened up the field to what we can do and the number of diseases we can treat with catheter-based procedures rather than open-heart surgery,” he explains. “Also exciting is the amount of structural heart disease that we can treat with catheter-based procedures.”
Dr. Yount’s approach is based around helping patients understand the benefits of preventive care. “When people come to see me, they think they have a major problem,” he says. “It may really be a problem, or it may just be heartburn. No matter what it turns out to be, it’s important to make sure the patient understands the importance of a healthy lifestyle to prevent new or future problems.”
Whether I’ll be seeing a patient chronically, or for just a few visits, I want to make sure they come away knowing how to take care of themselves better.
Dr. Royce Dean Yount, M.D.
Crescent City Cardiovascular
3715 Prytania St.
Specialties: Interventional Cardiology and Cardiovascular Diseases
Residency: Louisiana State University, Internal Medicine
Fellowship: Louisiana State University, Interventional Cardiology
Board Certifications: Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Diseases, Interventional Cardiology