My Baystate Story: Colby Salerno, DO Cardiology Fellow, Baystate Medical Center
Hi, my name is Colby Salerno, and I am a first year Cardiology Fellow at Baystate Health. My decision to become a Cardiologist began with the diagnosis of my own heart disease.
I was 12 years old when I was diagnosed with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. When I graduated from college, I found out that my heart disease had progressed to the point I would need a heart transplant. Almost 2 years later, 6 months of which I spent living in the CCU waiting on a new heart, I finally got my heart transplant at the age of 24.
My experience through all of this led me to want to become a physician and follow in my doctors’ footsteps to become an advanced heart failure and transplant cardiologist.
Although I would have never chosen this path, I now embrace it and use my experience to help in my approach to patient care.
I have been through numerous procedures and situations as a patient that have allowed me to empathize greatly with my patients. This has allowed me to discuss symptoms and experiences with much greater detail and personalization than most other physicians are able to which allows for an amazing relationship with my patients that I cherish. I am so thankful for the physicians and nurses that have cared for me and allowed me to reach my career goals and for the physicians now that are my colleagues and continue to teach me more and more about cardiology.
I hope to use my position as a cardiologist who has also been through a heart transplant to continue to connect with my patients on a personal level and use opportunities like Heart Month to share my story and encourage everyone to sign up to be an organ donor.