Dr Kelly Stanton – General Cardiologist

18 July 2023

Dr Kelly Stanton General Cardiologist

Dr Kelly Stanton is a general Cardiologist who specialises in advanced cardiac imaging using echocardiography, cardiac CT and cardiac MRI, and has recently joined The Wesley Hospital’s robust cardiology team.

Dr Stanton is passionate about preventing heart disease, which is the topic of her PhD, where she explores the effect of exercise on atherosclerosis and cardiovascular risk factors such as lipids and inflammation.

She also looked at the effect of exercise on cardiac remodelling in elite and non-elite athletes using cardiac MRI and echocardiography.

“I enjoyed working with elite athletes in my PhD to determine how the heart adapts and remodels in response to high intensity exercise and to better understand physiological versus pathological remodelling,” Dr Stanton said.

“It is my passion to work with people with cardiovascular disease, or those with risk factors for cardiovascular disease, to help them maintain a healthy heart.

“I want to help people meet their lifestyle and occupational goals whatever they may be, from a walk in the park all the way through to working with elite athletes.”

In addition to focusing on primary prevention for cardiovascular disease, Dr Stanton also is passionate about secondary prevention of heart disease and cardiomyopathies.

“I am motivated to improve cardiac outcomes in both men and women, however as a female cardiologist I am very conscious that women with cardiac disease often present with less typical symptoms compared to men,” Dr Stanton said.

“This can lead to misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis, leading to worse outcomes. This is an important area that all doctors need to be aware of to ensure both men and women get timely diagnosis and timely access to cardiac care.

“Women also have sex specific risk factors, many related to pregnancy, that are still not well recognised when considering traditional risk factors for cardiovascular disease in women.”

In addition to being a Cardiologist, Dr Stanton is also a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army Reserve and is the Senior Medical Officer of a Brigade at Gallipoli Barracks Enoggera where she oversees the health of around 2200 Australian Army Personnel.

She also is an adviser with respect to cardiovascular disease in the Australian Defence Force and has done additional training in aviation medicine.

“While in the Defence Force I have had the privilege of serving overseas as a medical officer including a four-month tour aboard the Hospital Ship USNS Mercy with the United States Navy,” Dr Stanton said.

“The ship has a 1000 bed hospital capability and I was able to travel around the South Pacific and South East Asia providing medical training and disaster preparedness to other health care workers in East Timor, the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia and Sri Lanka.

“Being able to work with health care professionals in many countries was an amazing experience, I was in particularly impressed by how much they can do with limited resources, and I learnt a lot.”

Dr Stanton explains that she didn’t always want to be a doctor and originally studied applied science at the University of Queensland to become an exercise physiologist, but her career took a turn and her first job was as a graduate in the Department of Defence. This led her to a position within Federal Parliament House as a Defence adviser.

“I was working in Parliament House in Canberra, the work was amazing but at the age of 23 I felt I was more suited to a career in medicine and decided to take a big risk and go back to university to study medicine,” Dr Stanton said.

‘Initially I was drawn to sports medicine given my background as an exercise physiologist, however from first year medicine I chose to pursue cardiology and I have been passionate about it ever since. I particularly enjoy drawing on my exercise physiology background to advocate for primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease.”

Dr Stanton was awarded the Bryan Hudson Medal in 2011 for being the highest achieving physician in Australasia in her specialist exams. She was also awarded a National Health and Medical Research Council scholarship for her PhD and has published in international journals.

Dr Stanton is also passional about medical education and is the clinical lead for final year medical students undertaking their medical speciality placements at the University of Queensland Royal Brisbane Clinical unit. She is an examiner for the Royal Australasian College of Physicians.

“I was so fortunate throughout my career to have fantastic mentors and I am very passionate about mentoring and supporting junior doctors.”

Dr Stanton is a mother to two beautiful daughters and will be working at the Wesley Hospital, to find out more about her or for a referral please visit, https://www.wesley.com.au/doctors/kelly-stanton

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General: wesley.media@uchealth.com.au
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