Cardiologist Jason Trager, DO, is curious by nature. He grew up in the Detroit suburbs – an ’80’s kid who built computers with the help of a neighbor, since YouTube “how to” videos hadn’t yet been invented. He enjoyed science and engineering, figuring out how things worked, programming and gaming.
With a dad as an internal medicine doctor, Dr. Trager’s path to medical school may have been paved from an early age. He earned undergraduate and medical degrees at Michigan State University. While in medical school, he played a game themed after a TV game show and hosted by one of his mentors: Who Wants to be a Cardiologist? “When I was in the hot seat, I did really well answering the questions,” Dr. Trager explained. “It just seemed to come naturally to me and that helped me realize I wanted to be a cardiologist.”
Dr. Trager’s education was through an osteopathic school that focuses on treating the entire body instead of individual organ systems. “I believe in non-pharmaceutical approaches to treatment whenever possible. For instance, in the treatment of high cholesterol, I would recommend diet and exercise changes in an effort to prevent other things from happening,” he said.
Recognizing that people cannot change their genetics, he explained that a low CT calcium score dictates more preventive actions such as diet and exercise, while a higher score can indicate coronary disease – and a more aggressive approach to treatment.
While Dr. Trager’s initial career plans included veterinary medicine, he quickly realized that he wanted to help people. “My dad was a doctor and I saw the impact he had on people. People have come to me and said that they wouldn’t be alive today without him. That really made an impact on me,” he said.
Dr. Trager’s philosophy is simple. “I’d rather walk with you and hold your hand than tell you what to do. I’ll educate you, and we can make the trip together,” he said of how he cares for his patients, adding that he is strongly committed to treating the disease and the patient.
Dr. Trager is board certified in internal medicine and nuclear cardiology, and he is a fellow in both the American College of Cardiology and the American College of Osteopathic Internists. He is board eligible in echocardiography and coronary CT angiography through the American College of Cardiology.
Dr. Trager is married to Stacy, who he met when they were summer camp counselors. They have two children: Matthew, 8, and Cori, 5. Dr. Trager practices with the Prairie Heart Institute team of cardiologists who staff the The Heart Center.
To make an appointment with Dr. Trager at The Heart Center, please ask your primary care provider for a referral, or for more information, call 217 238-4960.