CIS welcomes new cardiologists to Baton Rouge

Sponsored by Cardiovascular Institute of the South

Cardiovascular Institute of the South (CIS) is welcoming three new cardiologists to its practice in Baton Rouge: Dr. Phillip Smith, Dr. Shashi Gavini and Dr. Ryan Gullatt. These physicians bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the team in line with CIS’s mission to provide the highest quality care available. Read on to learn more about each of their specialties.

Dr. Phillip Smith joins the team as an interventional/structural cardiologist. He specializes in treating the valves and structural conditions of the heart. For instance, when heart valves become damaged or diseased, the heart muscle must work harder to pump the blood, and sometimes valve replacements are needed. Other structural or congenital conditions, such as holes in the heart or septal defects, also require expert diagnosis and treatment of a trained structural heart physician. Dr. Smith is specifically trained to diagnose and treat these types of conditions.

Dr. Shashi Gavini joins CIS as a general cardiologist, with a focus and interest on women’s health. Heart disease is the top cause of death in women, accounting for one in three deaths each year. The symptoms of heart disease in women may be subtle, such as pain in the neck, jaw, arms or upper back, nausea, shortness of breath or fatigue. It’s also important to know unique risk factors to women, such as how menopause and pregnancy can affect blood vessels and heart health. It’s true that disease looks and feels different in women, which is why a physician trained in these gender differences can be helpful for your overall care. This is where Dr. Gavini will offer her expertise in helping women understand their risk.

Dr. Ryan Gullatt joins the team as an electrophysiologist. Cardiac electrophysiologists, often referred to as EPs, are cardiologists who have additional medical training in the diagnosis and treatment of heart rhythm disorders. In layman’s terms, you can think of an electrophysiologist as an electrician, specializing in the heart’s electrical function whereas a cardiologist acts more as a plumber, focusing on the vascular function of the heart. Therefore, Dr. Gullatt specializes in treating conditions such as atrial fibrillation and arrythmias.

CIS strives to bring the very best physicians to your community, along with advanced technology and compassionate care, to better treat cardiovascular disease. CIS treats the whole vascular system, including your heart and your legs. To schedule an appointment, please call CIS’s office at 225.308.0247 or visit