Published March 16, 2016
Volume 24, Number 3

Heart of the Valley’s Pediatric Cardiologists

Help Children, Young Adults Stay on the Beat

Heart of the Valley
Dr. Maxwell and Heart of the Valley staff

By Jay Hipps

Dr. Andrew Maxwell and Dr. Christina Sheridan are the two specialists behind Heart of the Valley Pediatric Cardiology, and it is safe to say that their hearts are in the right place. By caring for children with cardiac issues, from in utero to adult, as well as reaching out to people who need their services and may not know it, they and their team provide a valuable service to the community.
“People come to Heart of the Valley for any cardiology care,” says Rachel Smith, office manager. “Heart disease, arrhythmias, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol are the most common conditions we treat.”
Cholesterol, as it turns out, is not just a problem in adults. “High cholesterol is usually genetic in kids,” says Smith. “Sometimes our nutritionist, April Shabazz, works with them to change their eating because that can really significantly help. But sometimes when it’s severe enough or genetic, they have to be on medication.”
The practice also provides fetal cardiology. “When there is a family history or the mother has diabetes or something else of concern, their OB will refer them and we do fetal echocardiograms,” Smith says.
In addition to the basic medical practice, Heart of the Valley participates in a variety of outreach programs. “Dr. Maxwell volunteers his time for a number of non-profit foundations and does heart screenings where they will check athletes with EKGs and echocardiograms to see if they’re at risk,” says Smith. “That’s where, through a heart screening, you would get tagged and hopefully we can help people who end up needing surgery.”
It is this sort of work which can help a young athlete treat what was an unknown and potentially dangerous condition. “Dr. Maxwell recently did a heart screening at De La Salle and found a kid who ended up having surgery, so he can really save lives by detecting problems in heart screenings.” Dr. Maxwell and Heart of the Valley have also worked to put equipment like defibrillators in schools, in order to provide immediate emergency treatment for anyone having a heart attack.
Dr. Maxwell’s most recent Screen-A-Teen Cardiac Screening of Athletes took place on Sunday, March 20th, sponsored by Via Foundation and Heart of the Valley along with Stanford Health at ValleyCare, and the Alameda County EMS. The event was held at Hart Middle School in Pleasanton. “Anyone with a family history (of cardiac issues) should be screened and cleared,” Smith says. “Cardiologists catch a lot of things that are treatable.” Future screenings will be listed on Heart of the Valley’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/HOTVPC.
Dr. Maxwell and Dr. Sheridan also work in several area hospitals, including ValleyCare, Washington, John Muir in Walnut Creek, St. Rose. “They go all over for in-patient babies that are just born,” says Smith. “If they are well enough to come see us they can, but otherwise they go to them.”
Heart of the Valley Pediatric Cardiology is in Hacienda at 5933 Coronado Lane. Call (925) 416-0100 or access www.heartofthevalley.us for additional information.


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