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According to Akinboboye, his Nigerian heritage provides the basis for his medical philosophy, which is built around the development of trust between doctor and patient. In Nigeria, certain procedures and tests are often not readily unavailable, shifting the focus of most doctors to one-on-one contact with patients.Akinboboye learned about the Nigeria medical system through first-hand experience - he was a sickly child and spent most of his first 12 years in and out of hospitals. It was this experience that led him to pursue medicine.Akinbobye said he tries to take time to get to know and understand his patients. The relationship that develops, he said, allows him to empower patients to make changes, rather simply relying on what he calls the "trust me, I'm a doctor" approach."You might not make as much money that way," Akinbobye said. "But in the end you win, because you have a healthy group of patients."Akinboboye, who is the director of nuclear cardiology at St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn, L.I., and operates a private practice on Merrick Boulevard in Laurelton, was recently recognized as one of the area's top heart doctor by Castle Connolly, a well-known medical guide.In recent years as the rate of coronary disease in America has steadily fallen amidst advances in medical technology, rates among minorities, and particularly women, have held steady, Akinboboyesaid. This disparity, he said, is one of the most difficult challenges facing the medical community.Akinboboye said that lowering cholesterol, not smoking and exercising are still the best ways to reduce the risk of heart attack. But some patients, he said, lack a basic understanding of their health problems and how to correct them. He tells the story of a man who had two heart attacks and suffered from high-blood pressure for 30 years, but still didn't know why he was sick."This is a failure of the medical system," Akinboboye said. "My colleagues just assume people know these things."Akinboboye, 45, went to medical school in Nigeria before coming to the United States in 1986 and completing his fellowship in Cardiology at Columbia University, where he joined the faculty in 1994. He remained a full-time professor until 2000, when he diversified his professional life, adding clinical research and patient care to the mix. Six years later, he has developed a strong reputation for his research, but is once again eager to put what he knows into practice."At the end of the day, where the rubber meets the road, so to speak," Akinboboye said of treating patients.Akinboboye currently spends about three days a week at his Merrick Boulevard office. One of his goals for the coming year is to find his way out of the laboratory and into the lives of his patients.Reach Reporter Craig Giammona by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 718-229-0300 ext. 146.
©2006 Community Newspaper Group
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