Dr. Flavia Soto discusses what to expect if you’re considering surgery to lose weight. In this week’s “HealthLink on Air,” she explains the different types of surgery available, such as gastric bypass and gastric sleeve, and which patients have the best chance of success.

Also this week, cardiologist and historian Howard Smulyan talks about five classic cardiac drugs: aspirin, atropine, digitalis, nitroglycerin and quinidine. And, public health scholar Kellan Baker discusses transgender health issues.

Join us Sunday, December 9 at 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. on WRVO.

A cardiac surgeon teams up with a cardiologist who specializes in electrophysiology to offer a new solution for people with atrial fibrillation, an irregular heart rhythm. The "convergent procedure," which is offered at Upstate University Hospital, is discussed with Drs. Randall Green and Aqeel Sandhu. The two cardiac surgeons also talk about minimally invasive techniques that are available for cardiac bypass surgery.

Also on the show this week: the role of standardized patients and how to become one, plus an overview of Medicare -- including where to get help or information.

Smoking rates have dropped in recent years, but cigarettes remain the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the U.S., and electronic cigarettes pose a new danger, says Dr. Leslie Kohman, professor of surgery and director of outreach for the Upstate Cancer Center.

A new style of implantable defibrillator is providing options to patients at risk for sudden cardiac arrest. The device is sewn below a patient’s skin, leaving the heart and its vessels untouched. Electrodes continually analyze the heart’s rhythm and the device uses a pulse generator to deliver a shock if necessary.

Dr. Traian Anghel explains how this device improves upon previous defibrillators which had to be implanted in the heart.