Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Client News: York Hospital first hospital in U.S. to perform cardiac procedure

William Nicholson, M.D., interventional cardiologist and structural heart specialist, Cardiac Diagnostic Associates, center, discusses the cardiac plug procedure with reporters during a news conference at York Hospital last week.

Source: "Around Wellspan" - Tuesday, July 06, 2010 Issue
York Hospital first hospital in U.S. to perform cardiac procedure - Cardiac plug device implanted into an 82-year-old patient

At a news conference last week, Dr. William Nicholson, an interventional cardiologist with Cardiac Diagnostic Associates, announced that York Hospital became the first hospital in the country to perform a revolutionary new procedure that is expected to define the standard of care for patients living with atrial fibrillation, the most common abnormal heart rhythm.

Blood clots can form from pooled blood in an appendage of the heart and break off and travel throughout the body, often to the brain, causing a stroke. The cardiac plug is implanted to seal the appendage, preventing blood from pooling there.

"York Hospital is accustomed to using cutting-edge technology, but it isn't often that you can be the first in the United States to do a procedure," said Nicholson.

"It is important to be able to offer your patients the best treatment for their condition. Being able to offer this alternative to patients in York would be an important benefit to our community.

"Performing the first cardiac plug procedure was the fruition of a lot of hard work and research by a team of individuals," he added.

The procedure will potentially enable patients with the most common abnormal heart rhythm to live without taking blood thinners such as warfarin and Coumadin, which are difficult to tolerate for many people and carry a risk of serious complications such as bleeding.

Some medical experts believe this procedure will become the standard of care for these patients within five years.

Jack Stottlemyer, the patient who received the implant, stayed overnight and was discharged the following day.

He said he was looking forward to getting off Coumadin so that he wouldn't have to take daily medication, have his blood checked every two weeks and worry about incurring a severe bleed.

"I didn't have any concern about having the procedure," he said. "I wanted to get off of Coumadin and this procedure will allow me to do so." York Hospital is one of only eight institutions nationwide to be selected by AGA Medical Holdings Inc. to participate in this early phase of the cardiac plug clinical trial.

"Being selected for this clinical trial is a testament to the program that has been built at York Hospital," said Nicholson.

"It recognizes the expertise available at York Hospital for surgical, interventional and imaging related to cardiac care."

See the York Daily Record article by clicking this link:

See the York Dispatch article by clicking this link:

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