The Avera Heart Hospital spent nearly $2 million dollars to convert one of their cath lab's into a hybrid robotic vascular lab. As Nancy Naeve Brown tells us what they added is the newest in technology for imaging during those less-invasive procedures to fix problems with your heart.
The Avera Heart Hospital unveiled its brand new state-of-art hybrid robotic vascular lab and it's the only one in the region. Hybrid means it's a combination cath lab and full surgical suite. The robot is actually the Siemens Artis Zeego and is the top-of-the-line as far as imaging is concerned, as vascular specialists will tell you, that is a concern when you are doing procedures using a catheter and images and skill are the only things guiding you.
Vascular Specialist Dr. Michael Bacharach with North Central Heart says, "We're very excited about this. It's the newest technology in regards to angiography equipment. It's a robotic type of catheterization laboratory that's actually designed to allow for improved imaging. It allows for 360 degree rotation so you can do 3-D imaging.
The Zeego moves everywhere the patient does. What makes that great is the imaging it provides because surgeons can't fix what they can't see.
Dr. Bacharach says, "This is one of the unique aspects of it and something the conventional lab could never have done where it can rotate all the way around. What that translates to is improved pictures; improved images to identify which blood vessels are the problem and how to fix them. The patient is also exposed to less radiation and less contrast materials. In those complicated cases, this is safer for the patient all the way around."
Cardiovascular Surgeon Dr. Tommy Reynolds with North Central Heart says now that they have this leading-edge imaging they hope to get into a clinical trial for replacing aortic valves in the cath lab.
Dr. Tommy Reynolds says, "That would allow us to put valves in with opening the chest or making small incisions so that's the next evolution that started with leg stents, now aortic aneurysm and the next we can do aortic valves replacement in the heart with better imaging technology."
When it comes to matters of the heart and keeping it ticking you want the best trained specialist armed with the best technology: At the Avera Heart Hospital they are.
March 30, 2011 the new robotic vascular lab was used for patients.