Heart Health Program

Important Notice

MUSC Health is closely monitoring the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The safety of our patients and care team is our number one priority.

In light of the current health crisis, all Thursday group education classes and Fit Kids sessions will be cancelled until further notice. We will communicate the re-opening of sessions via text, so please read your Heart Health text messages.

Virtual group education sessions are held Mondays and Thursdays at 4:00pm. The link to these sessions is sent via text message and posted on the private Heart Health Facebook group page. *Participants must be enrolled in the Heart Health program to participate in the virtual group sessions.*

*This Facebook group is only for Heart Health families. Your child’s name and date of birth must be provided for your request to join the group to be accepted

Ambulatory clinics are in modified operations at this time, so you may choose a virtual video visit (via Doxy.me) or a phone call follow-up (we recommend video to enhance the counseling and educational experience). Appointments will remain virtual until further notice. Please reach out to us with any questions. The best option is email. If you prefer to call with questions, you must leave a message for us to call you back or there is no way for us to know you called: 843-792-4717.

What Is It? 

The Heart Health Program is both the pediatric weight management program of MUSC Children's Health and the preventive cardiology service of the Children's Heart Center. As a family-centered and lifestyle-oriented program, Heart Health is appropriate for any child or adolescent who has abnormal weight gain and/or associated cardiovascular risk factors, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or pre-diabetes.

What Do I Get?

  • Regular clinic visits with a Registered Dietitian who has a certificate in training in pediatric and adult weight management
  • Periodic physical examinations with the program’s attending Medical Director board certified in pediatrics and obesity medicine
  • Structured program with nutrition, activity, and behavioral education
  • Personalized coaching and health recommendations
  • Weekly group sessions
  • Weekday and Saturday fitness sessions
  • Monthly newsletters

How Do I Enroll?

Call our office at 843-792-4717 or 800-343-1983 and we will get you started. We will need a doctor’s referral to the program, which can be faxed to 843-792-5878.

Building Healthy Communities Virtual Fitness Challenge

The 6th Annual Building Healthy Communities 5K Run/Walk and Wellness Expo has been converted to a 6-week virtual fitness challenge. If you have already registered for the original event, you can transfer that registration to the virtual challenge and we will refund the difference. If you are unable to participate in the virtual fitness challenge, your registration will be refunded. Thank you so much for your understanding and support.

Sign up to complete weekly fitness challenges and join in the fight against childhood obesity. We also have a lot of exciting incentive prizes to be awarded by random drawing, so be ready to be fit and healthy. The Building Healthy Communities Virtual Fitness challenge will raise funds to benefit the Heart Health Program of MUSC’s Children’s Hospital while helping to promote health and wellness.

Your registration fee includes a t-shirt and other "swag" items. To be eligible for the weekly prize of a $25 gift card (one awarded each of the six weeks), you will need to complete and log each weekly fitness challenge (one challenge per week) no later than 11:59 pm of each Saturday throughout the six weeks. You may log extra bouts of exercise to be entered into additional drawings for a variety of prizes (minimum of 30 minutes or 2 miles). There will be a final prize of a $100 gift card awarded at the end of the six weeks, with only those who completed and logged all six weekly challenges eligible. All prize drawings will be by random drawing. Below are the six weekly challenges (one challenge per week to be done in one bout):

  • Week one fitness challenge: minimum of 20 minutes of any exercise or 1 mile of running/walking
  • Week two fitness challenge: minimum of 30 minutes of any exercise or 2 miles of running/walking
  • Week three fitness challenge: minimum of 40 minutes of any exercise or 3 miles or running/walking
  • Week four fitness challenge: minimum of 50 minutes of any exercise or 4 miles of running/walking
  • Week five fitness challenge: minimum of 60 minutes of any exercise or 5 miles of running/walking
  • Week six fitness challenge: minimum of 60 minutes of any exercise or 5 miles of running/walking

To register, please visit: https://runsignup.com/buildinghealthycommunities

$25 Registration ends September 26, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. EST.

Our Care Team

Christine SanGiovanni, M.D., MSCR | Medical Director
Dr. Christine SanGiovanni is excited to be a provider for the Heart Health program. She is an assistant professor in the Pediatrics Department of the Medical University of South Carolina. She completed her medical education at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and completed her pediatric residency and chief residency year at the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York. She then completed a General Academic Fellowship and obtained her Master of Science in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. Her research interests are in assisting primary care providers with screening and managing childhood obesity and its co-morbidities. She is involved in research analyzing and implementing the use of smartphone apps to help adolescents better manage their weight and develop a healthy lifestyle.

Kristal Matlock, M.D. | Program Physician
Dr. Matlock has a passion for helping children and teens build healthy habits. She is a board-certified Pediatric Endocrinologist and assistant professor in the Pediatrics Department of the Medical University of South Carolina. She completed her medical education at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Medicine. Dr. Matlock previously lived in Cincinnati for pediatric residency and endocrinology fellowship at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and Medical Center. 

Janet Carter, MS, RD, LD | Program Manager
Janet is Program Manager and lead dietitian of the Heart Health program. She holds a certificate in training in Childhood and Adolescent Weight Management (in addition to adult) and is a Fellow of the National Lipid Association (clinical lipidology). She has been a practicing dietitian for nearly 20 years, with 14 of those in her current role. She completed her master’s in science degree and dietetic internship at Boston University and has enjoyed working with families on healthy habits ever since.

Elise Rodriguez, MS, RDN, LD | Program Dietitian
Elise is a dietitian with the Heart Health program. She completed her Master's Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics and dietetic internship with an emphasis in pediatric nutrition at Saint Louis University. She has worked with kids and teens for years and enjoys helping them create healthy lifestyles.

News & Announcements

Update regarding the 6th Annual Building Healthy Communities 5K and Wellness Expo
Our 6th Annual Building Healthy Communities 5K and Wellness Expo has been converted to a virtual fitness challenge this year. Please see the information in the Building Healthy Communities Virtual Fitness Challenge section above or visit our Facebook page for more details. 

Are you looking for an additional weight loss resource?
Eligible adolescents and adults may benefit from the MUSC Bariatric Surgery program, which includes experienced mental health professionals, dietitians, nurses and physicians, and is dedicated to helping patients safely realize weight loss success. 

Monthly Newsletters (PDFs)

September 2020 | Web Accessible Version

August 2020 | Web Accessible Version

July 2020 | Web Accessible Version

June 2020 | Web Accessible Version

May 2020

April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

December 2019

November 2019

October 2019

September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

April 2019

March 2019

February 2019

January 2019