Elsa Grace Vonna Giardina, MD

Cardiovascular Disease
Internal Medicine
More specialties
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Elsa-Grace V. Giardina, MD,MS is Professor of Medicine at the Columbia University Medical Center and Attending Physician at the New York Presbyterian Hospital. She trained as a non-invasive cardiologist, pharmaco-electrophysiologist and clinical pharmacologist all at Columbia University and recieved a Master's degree in metabolism from the Institute of Human Nutrition, College of Physicians & Surgeons. Her current research and educational focus is on cardiovascular risk and the impact of nutrition and obesity on intergenerational cardiovascular health and disease among women and their families.

Dr. Giardina is recognized nationally as an expert on cardio-active drugs and has been a member of the Cardio-Renal Advisory Committee of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Pharmacology study section of the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI). Her many honors include the Jane V. Myers Memorial Medical Scholarship from Bryn Mawr College, the PMA Faculty Development Award in Clinical Pharmacology, the American Heart Association Appreciation Award for community service, the American Medical Women’s Association Gender Equity Award and she is a Trustee of the New York Academy of Medicine. She is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology (FACC), the American College of Physicians (FACP), and the American Heart Association (FAHA).

She was awarded the “Award of Excellence” by Governor George Pataki of New York State for research advancements on cardiac disease in women and for developing the Center for Women’s Health at the Columbia University Medical Center. She received the Medal of Honor from New York Medical College for outstanding achievements and was named a Fellow of the Virginia Apgar Society, an honor bestowed on Columbia University faculty that recognizes individual achievement and commitment to education excellence. Dr. Giardina is a member of the Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons Academy of Clinical Excellence (ACE) and she has mentored more than 40 students, residents, fellows and young attendings in the specialty of cardiovascular disease, women's health and nutrition.

Areas of Expertise / Conditions Treated

  • Cardiac Arrhythmia
  • High Blood Pressure
  • High Cholesterol
  • Metabolism and Weight on the Heart
  • Mitral Valve Prolapse
  • Nutrition
  • Preventive Cardiology
  • Women's Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Womens Heart Disease

Academic Appointments

  • Professor of Medicine at CUMC

Administrative Titles

  • Director Center for Women's Health in Cardiology
  • Director Ambulatory Clinic Cardiovascular Fellowship

Hospital Affiliations

  • NewYork-Presbyterian / Columbia University Irving Medical Center


  • Spanish


  • Female

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161 Fort Washington Avenue
New York, NY 10032

Credentials & Experience

Education & Training

  • MD, New York Medical College (Valhalla)
  • MS, 2014 Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
  • Internship: Roosevelt Hospital
  • Residency: Roosevelt Hospital
  • Fellowship: Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, NY

Committees, Societies, Councils

Fellow, American College of Cardiology

Fellow, American College of Physicians

Fellow, American Heart Association

Trustee, New York Academy of Medicine

Board Certifications

  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Internal Medicine

Honors & Awards

  • 1972-1974 - Pharmaceutical Manufacturer's Association Awardee in Clinical Pharmacology;
  • 1978 - Fellow American College of Cardiology
  • 1994 - American Heart Association Appreciation Award for Advancement of Heart Disease in Women;
  • 1996 - First Award of Excellence,Womens History Month, Awarded by Governor George Pataki, New York State for developing a Center for Womens' Health Center at Columbia University Medical Center and innovative clinical research in womens health;
  • 2000- Board of Directors, Stanley J. Sarnoff Endowment for Cardiovascular Science; Strategic Planning Committee Chair
  • 2005-2008 - Secretary Board of Directors, Sarnoff Endowment for Cardiovascular Science
  • 2005 - AHA Study Section Heritage Affiliate Grants Peer Review Section
  • 2008 - Trustee of the Board of Directors, The New York Academy of Medicine
  • 2009 -Fellow of the Glenda Garvey Teaching Academy, CUMC
  • 2010 - Medal of Honor, New York Medical College
  • 2012 - Mentor, Laura Flink, MD,Young Clinical Investigator of the Year 2012, (NewYork State chapter, American College of Cardiology)
  • 2012 - Fellow Virginia Apgar Society, Vagelos College of Physicians &Surgeons
  • 2017 - Fellow Academy of Clinical Excellence, Vagelos College of Physician & Surgeons


Heart Health in Action: Dr. Giardina has been investigating the health of minority women since 1992. She and colleagues designed Heart Health in Action, a community-based team concept with original funding from the Office of Women’s Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The program, focuses on risk reduction for heart disease and stroke, identifies patients with components of the metabolic syndrome (hypertension; low HDL-cholesterol; high triglycerides; high blood sugar and increased waist size). The project has screening, education and awareness, behavior modification, and tracking and evaluation components. The data base consists of more than 1100 subjects and 40 medical residents, cardiology fellows, graduate students, and young faculty have contributed to more than 75 publications and presentations in high quality, peer-reviewed journals. For information or to volunteer, call: Dr. Elsa Giardina at (212) 305-5371.

Research Interests

  • Nutritional relationship to cardiovascular disease
  • Women's cardiovascular health

Clinical Trials

Heart Heatlth in Action: A data base surveying the cardiovascular health of women living in Washington-Heights Inwood

Selected Publications

  • Mayat Z, Giardina EV, Liao M, Aggarwal B.Associations of Inflammation, Physical Activity, and Sleep in a Diverse Population of Women. J Women's Health (Larchmt). 2020 Mar 12. doi: 10.1089/jwh.2019.7663. PMID: 32175800
  • Makarem N, Paul J, Giardina EV, Liao M, Aggarwal B.Evening chronotype is associated with poor cardiovascular health and adverse health behaviors in a diverse population of women. Chronobiol Int. 2020 Mar 4:1-13. doi: 10.1080/07420528.2020.1732403.PMID: 32126839
  • Giardina EGV, Paul TK, Hayes D, Sciacca RR. Cardiovascular Disease Risk among Young Urban Women.Journal of Women's Health, 2016,11:1139-1146
  • Paul TK, Sciacca RR, Bier ML, Rodriguez J, Song S, Giardina EGV. Size Misperception among Overweight and Obese Families.J Gen Intern Med. 2015 Jan;30(1):43-50 101.
  • Giardina EGV.To fight the obesity epidemic, Americans will have to first recognize they are obese. Op-ED Pacific Standard, August 21, 2014
  • Giardina EGV. Heartbreaking News: Heart Attack in Young Women. Op-ED Huffington Post, November 23, 2014
  • Flink L, Sciacca RR, Bier ML, Rodriguez J, Giardina EG. Women at High Risk for Cardiovascular Disease Lack Basic Cardiovascular Disease Knowledge. Clin Cardiol, 2013
  • Giardina EGV, Sciacca RR, Flink LE, Paul TK, Rodriguez J, Bier ML, Moise N. Cardiovascular Disease Knowledge and Weight Perception Among Hispanic and Non-Hispanic White Women, Journal of Women's Health, 2013;22:1009-15
  • Giardina EGV, Mull L, Sciacca RR, Akabas S, Flink L, Moise N, Paul TK, Dumas NE, Bier M L, Mattina D. Relationship between Cardiovascular Disease Knowledge and Race/Ethnicity, Education and Weight Status. Clin Cardiol, 2012; 35(1):43-8
  • Getaneh A, Giardina EGV, Findley SE. Factors related to weight loss attempts among Dominican Immigrants. J Immigrant and Minority Health,2012; 3-12
  • Giardina EGV, Sciacca RR, Foody JAM, D'Onofrio G, Villablanca A, Leatherwood S, Taylor A, Haynes SG. The Office of Women's Health initiative to improve women's heart health: focus on knowledge and awareness among women with cardiometabolic risk factors. J Women's Health, 2011, 20:1-8.