Hollywood's Top Doctors: Best Cardiologists in Los Angeles

The top M.D.s as vetted by leading medical-database authority Castle Connolly

A version of this story first appeared in the Sept. 19 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

Hollywood is a town obsessed with its health — and its vanity. So it’s no surprise that everyone has an opinion on who the best doctors in Los Angeles are, from who can keep aging at bay for those all-important close-ups to whom to count on to cure life-threatening illnesses.

To identify the 484 elite physicians who qualified for The Hollywood Reporter’s inaugural list of the top docs in L.A., THR’s editors went two routes. First, THR partnered with the physician-led research team of Castle Connolly, the U.S.' preeminent medical-database authority, to identify the highest-rated practitioners in their specialties, all of whom are nominated by their peers in an extensive survey process of thousands of U.S. doctors each year. Castle Connolly screens these doctors’ medical educations, training, hospital appointments, disciplinary histories and much more. Doctors do not and cannot pay to be included.

THR then went further and surveyed 800 professionals in the film, television, movie and media fields to find out who among these doctors are the most beloved, trusted and go-to physicians in L.A. These 43 industry favorites include Morgan Freeman's holistic internist Dr. Soram Khalsa, Dr. Mehmet Oz's gastroenterologist Dr. Jonathan LaPook, Naomi Watts' NYC dermatologist David Colbert, KISS' Paul Stanley's ear, nose and throat doctor Joe Sugerman, Steve Tisch's favorite neurosurgeon and Dr. Neal ElAttrache, the orthopedist who healed Charlize Theron's herniated disc and Dr. Robert Kay, the surgeon who fixed Starz CEO Chris Albrecht's daughter Tess after a car accident.

The city's best cardiologists can be found below.

Cardiology

Cathleen N. Bairey-Merz
Cardiovascular disease
Barbra Streisand Women's Heart Center in the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute
127 S. San Vicente Blvd.
Los Angeles 90048
310-423-9680

David S. Cannom
Cardiac electrophysiology
Los Angeles Cardiology Associates
1245 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles 90017
213-977-0419
Also: Good Samaritan

INDUSTRY FAVORITE

Jeffrey Caren and Mark Urman
8635 West Third Street, Suite 890W
Los Angeles 90048
310-659-0714
Also: Cedars-Sinai

Dr. Urman and Dr. Caren have practiced together for 20 years (“I’ve been with Dr. Caren almost as long as with my wife,” Urman jokes) and they focus on preventative medicine for heart health, from electrocardiograms and ultrasounds to diet and stress advice. The diet most patients opt for is a fish- and legume-based Mediterranean diet that’s “easy to enjoy” thanks to the city’s farmers’ markets, Urman says. He insists that their Hollywood patients are no higher-strung than average — “You’ve got your high-stress, high-anxiety people, and you’ve got your people who are balanced,” he says — and there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to decompressing. “It could be reading a book or taking a romantic walk with your spouse or partner,” says Urman. “It could be learning to turn your cell phone off.”

Uri Elkayam
Cardiovascular disease
LAC & USC Medical Center
1520 San Pablo St.
Los Angeles 90033
323-226-7541

Gregg C. Fonarow
Cardiovascular disease
UCLA Health System
200 UCLA Medical Plaza
Los Angeles 90095
310-825-8816

Eli S. Gang
Cardiac electrophysiology
Cardiovascular Medical Group of Southern California
414 N. Camden Drive
Beverly Hills 90210
310-278-3400
Also: Cedars-Sinai

Debra R. Judelson
Cardiovascular disease
Cardiovascular Medical Group of Southern California
414 N. Camden Drive
Beverly Hills 90210
310-278-3400
Also: Cedars-Sinai

Jon A. Kobashigawa
Cardiovascular disease
California Heart Center
8536 Wilshire Blvd.
Beverly Hills 90211
310-248-8300
Also: Cedars-Sinai

Leslie A. Saxon
Cardiovascular disease
Keck Medicine of USC
1520 San Pablo St.
Los Angeles 90033
323-442-5100

INDUSTRY FAVORITE

Prediman K. Shah
Cardiovascular disease
Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute
8700 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles 90048
310-423-3884

After Saturday Night Live veteran Dana Carvey's shocking heart attack at age 42 and his botched bypass surgery (for which he sued for malpractice), Dr. Shah performed Carvey's fourth angioplasty, which was a success. They've "worked together" as doctor-patient and friends ever since. "I don't like being scolded," says Carvey. "I found P.K.'s scientific approach very pragmatic, very logical and calming." Adds Shah: "You want to be a partner in their care, not an adversary." He does have one stern parting word, though lithe Hollywood actors might not need this advice: "Exercise! Exercise!"

Charles D. Swerdlow
Cardiac electrophysiology
Cardiovascular Medical Group of Southern California
414 N. Camden Drive
Beverly Hills 90210
310-278-3400
Also: Cedars-Sinai

Jonathan Marvin Tobis
Cardiovascular disease
UCLA Health System
100 UCLA Medical Plaza
Los Angeles 90095
310-825-9011

More From THR's Top Doctors Issue:

Hollywood's Top Doctors Revealed: Exclusive Survey

See The Doctors With Their Famous Patients

Hollywood's Vaccine Wars: L.A.'s "Entitled" Westsiders Behind City's Epidemic

Hollywood's Biggest Anti-Vaccine Proponents

Hollywood Vaccination Fail: Why L.A. Schoolkids Are Getting Sick

How to Live Forever: The (Mad?) Science Hollywood Is Using to "Cure" Death

"I'm Going to Live Forever": Hollywood Elders' Best Quotes About Aging

Is Working in Hollywood Bad for Your Health?

L.A.'s Emergency Rooms, Rated

Meet the Real-Life McDreamy: The Doctor Behind 'Grey's Anatomy'

Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. is a healthcare research and information company founded in 1991 by a former medical college board chairman and president to help guide consumers to America's top doctors and top hospitals. Castle Connolly's established survey and research process, under the direction of an MD, involves many tens of thousands of physicians as well as academic medical centers, specialty hospitals and regional and community hospitals all across the nation. leadership of leading hospitals.

Castle Connolly's physician-led team of researchers follows a rigorous screening process to select top doctors on both the national and regional levels. Its online nominations process — located at www.castleconnolly.com/nominations — is open to all licensed physicians in America who are able to nominate physicians in any medical specialty and in any part of the country, as well as indicate whether the nominated physicians is, in their opinion, among the best in their region in their medical specialty or among the best in the nation in their medical specialty. Careful screening of doctors' educational and professional experience is essential before final selection is made among those physicians most highly regarded by their peers. The result - we identify the top doctors in America and provide you, the consumer, with detailed information about their education, training and special expertise in our paperback guides, national and regional magazine “Top Doctors” features and online directories.

Doctors do not and cannot pay to be selected and profiled as Castle Connolly Top Doctors

Physicians selected for inclusion in this magazine's "Top Doctors" feature may also appear as Regional Top Doctors online at www.castleconnolly.com, or in one of Castle Connolly's Top Doctors™ guides, such as America's Top Doctors® or America's Top Doctors® for Cancer.

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