Professor Sharp qualified from Edinburgh Medical School in 1998 and was appointed as a Consultant Cardiologist at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital in 2011. He was appointed Honorary Associate Professor at the University of Exeter in 2018.
He conducted his early training at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, before moving to London for his senior clinical training. He completed the prestigious Milan-Imperial Interventional Cardiology Fellowship programme, having spent a year in San Raffaele and Columbus Hospitals, Milan, Italy, under the tutelage of Professor Antonio Colombo. He also spent three years training in interventional cardiology at St Mary’s Hospital and The Hammersmith Hospital (Imperial College Hospitals) in London.
Professor Sharp was awarded an MD postgraduate research degree from the University of Edinburgh for his work on the hypertensive heart and now leads a large research programme at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital. He has been Principal Investigator in more than 30 ethically-approved research trials since 2012 and has published extensively. He is regularly invited to lecture at national and international conferences in the fields of coronary artery disease, pulmonary embolism and hypertension.
His specialist interests include:
- Hypertension – Professor Sharp is lead investigator for a research study looking at novel mechanisms of blood pressure control in newly diagnosed high blood pressure. He is on the steering committee of a major international randomised trial of renal denervation, a one-off treatment for high blood pressure. He has recruited patients to six trials of renal denervation, two of which he recently co-authored and published in The Lancet medical journal, showing that a single one-hour, local anaesthetic procedure can persistently lower blood pressure.
- Intra-coronary physiology to assess the causes of chest pain – Professor Sharp is on the steering committee of a major international trial looking at why some patients fail to gain symptomatic relief from coronary stenting and was one of the first investigators in the UK to use co-registration technology to optimise stent selection and placement. He recently co-authored a publication in this area in the New England Journal of Medicine, the world’s pre-eminent medical journal.
- Complex angioplasty and stenting of coronary artery disease – Professor Sharp set up the rotablation service at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital in 2012 and is one of the highest volume operators in the Peninsula. Results of his coronary stenting cases can be found on the British Cardiac Interventional Society national website by entering ‘Sharp’ into the operator name section.
- Pulmonary embolism – Professor Sharp is the Chief Investigator for a national multicentre study of the interventional management of pulmonary embolism and lectures internationally on new treatments for blood clots in the lung.
- Intracoronary imaging – Professor Sharp is Course Director of Advances in Intravascular Imaging, a course that recruits faculty from across the world to teach interventional cardiologists the subtleties of intravascular ultrasound.
He sees patients with a broad range of cardiac symptoms, including palpitations, chest pain, breathlessness and high blood pressure.