Ross University Blog

ALUMNI: Heart to Heart with Ramzan M. Zakir, MD, FACC, FSCAI

February 17, 2016

In recognition of American Heart Month, the “Heart to Heart” series provides an inside look into the career path of cardiologists who got their start at RUSM. Below Dr. Zakir, cardiologist, professor and sought-after expert speaker, shares his experience in providing innovative medical treatments.

RUSM: What influenced you to pursue medicine?

It was my father's dream for me to pursue a career in medicine. I always enjoyed science classes so the interest was definitely there on my side as well.

RUSM: Why did you choose cardiology as a specialty?

ZAKIR: Once in medical school, I was fascinated with cardiovascular pathophysiology and my interest to pursue a career in cardiology began. I spent a day with my Dad's cardiologist in the office and really enjoyed the patient interactions which helped cement my decision.

RUSM: What do you find most rewarding about being a cardiologist?

ZAKIR: What I find most rewarding and the main reason for pursuing a career in interventional cardiology is that interventions can have an immediate positive impact on patients’ lives, and can be life-saving in acute settings. Seeing the patient's and the family's appreciation for my efforts and outcomes is why I love being an interventional cardiologist.

RUSM: Therefore, I would imagine a career highlight for you is being a part of innovative technology used in your department, like the Lightbox to treat peripheral artery disease. Can you talk about that?

ZAKIR:  It [the Lightbox] allows you to visualize inside the artery to improve success rates in crossing arteries in the legs that are completely blocked. By imaging inside the artery, we can more safely and effectively manage patients that are suffering from debilitating peripheral arterial disease. We were one of the first sites in the country to adapt and utilize this technology.  (See video)

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Dr. Zakir discusses new treatment option for patients with Peripheral Artery Disease.

More on Ramzan M. Zakir, MD, FACC, FSCAI



  • Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
  • Director of Transradial Catheterization, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital
  • Director of Peripheral Vascular Program, Saint Peters University Hospital


  • Resident, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) and Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC)
  • Chief Resident, UMDNJ and HUMC
  • Cardiology Fellow, UMDNJ and HUMC
  • Chief Fellow, UMDNJ and HUMC
  • Interventional Fellow, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center

For several years, Dr. Zakir has been an invited faculty member at numerous conferences, see select highlights below:

Philadelphia Cardiovascular Symposium presented by the International Society of Endovascular Specialist (2015)
Presenter: Drug Coated Balloons for the Treatment of Critical Limb Ischemia (CLI) (see video)

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Dr. Zakir presenting at the Philadelphia Cardiovascular Symposium hosted by the International Society of Endovascular Specialist.

Chicago Endovascular Conference (2015)
Panelist: Business of Medicine – Arterial and Venous
Panelist: Below-the-knee Intervention/Would Care Pedal Intervention II
Co-Presenter: Complex Pedal Access and Below-the-Knee Cases

Complex Cardiovascular Catheter Therapeutics (2015)
Panelist, Moderator, and Presenter during several sessions

New Cardiovascular Horizons (2015)
(General Session and Summit Talk): Drug-Eluting Stent Implantation for the Treatment of CLI and Rotational Atherectomy and Thrombectomy in CLI: How is this Different from Other Devices?

Euro PCR in Paris, France (2012)
: CLI After Bypass Graft Failure


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