Center for Women’s Heart & Vascular Health

A Research Department at THI

About the Department

Texas Heart Institute’s Center for Women’s Heart & Vascular Health (THI Women’s Center) launched in 2010 to strengthen the Institute’s focus on women. Dr. James T. Willerson invited Dr. Stephanie Coulter to establish and direct the department, and under her leadership, the Women’s Center is thriving today and remains one of THI’s fastest growing programs.

The purpose of the Women’s Center is to strengthen the Institute’s focus on women-oriented research, address the significant gender gaps that exist in cardiovascular medicine by educating women and physicians caring for women, and investigate the causes of excess cardiac risk in minority populations. The center has three overarching goals:

  • Conduct clinical research on women and heart disease
  • Raise awareness among Houston women and beyond
  • Educate doctors and nurses to better recognize the danger signs in their female patients

THI’s Women’s Center supports the Institute’s research and education mission in multiple ways, including a translational research program, Annual Women’s Heart & Vascular Symposium, the annual THI Journal Special Section – Cardiovascular Disease in Women, e-newsletters, heart health screenings, a speakers bureau, educational programs for young girls, community lectures and support groups for women. Through these efforts, the Center has established unparalleled trust and strong relationships with the diverse Houston community and beyond. All programs aim to reach more women and professionals taking care of women to positively impact the cardiovascular health of our community.

Current Projects

The Women’s Center has a number of research projects currently underway. Below is a snapshot of some of these projects.

Houston HeartReach Registry
Since the launch of the Women’s Center, Dr. Coulter has been interested in investigating the roles biology, psychology and lifestyle play in putting a woman at risk for heart disease. To investigate the racial disparity in the development of cardiovascular disease within Harris County, a database registry has been established in correlation with the Houston HeartReach community outreach program that was launched in 2011. Contact Us
English Fact Sheet | Spanish Fact Sheet

Women’s Research & Training Program
Launched in January 2017, the Women’s Center is leading a new collaborative research and training program in the Texas Medical Center with physician researchers and faculty from THI, the UT School of Public Health, Baylor College of Medicine, and The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Medical School.

Texas Heart Institute Percutaneous Valve Research Database
Led by Dr. Stephanie Coulter in collaboration with the Center for Heart Valve Disease, the Women’s Center launched a Percutaneous Valve Research Database to obtain the baseline characteristics, procedures, treatments, outcomes and follow-up data of all patients receiving Transcutaneous Aortic Valve Replacement “TAVR” (Transcutaneous Aortic Valve Implantation “TAVI” or Transcatheter Valve Therapies “TVT”.