More Treatment Options

Heart

​More Treatment Options

Because heart disease includes a variety of complex diseases and conditions, the Parkview Heart Institute offers a wide range of treatment options.

Pacemaker and defibrillator checkups

The heart is required to maintain an appropriate heart rate and rhythm to keep blood flowing efficiently throughout the body. Pacemakers and defibrillators are devices sometimes implanted in the body to keep the heart beating properly. Periodic checkups are required of these devices to insure proper functioning.

Anticoagulation Therapy

Anticoagulant medications are part of a daily routine for some heart patients. To make certain the medication is working correctly and effectively, the Anticoagulation Therapy Unit at the Parkview Heart Institute performs simple finger-stick blood tests during patient visits. Results are available within a few minutes so that any needed adjustments can be made to the current medication dosage.

Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy (CRT)

Sometimes the heart gets “stuck” in an abnormal rhythm. To correct this condition, adhesive patches are applied to the patient’s chest and an electrical impulse is delivered to restore normal heart rhythm.

Pacemakers

A pacemaker is a device that helps maintain a normal heart rhythm. It sends electrical signals to the heart to stimulate contraction or pumping of the heart muscle. It is designed for patients who have irregular or very slow heart rates and symptoms of fainting or fatigue. The pacemaker is placed under the skin on the chest wall below the collarbone. Then, one or two leads are positioned inside the heart to transmit the signal from the device to the heart.

Implantable Cardiac Defibrillators (ICD)

An ICD is a device implanted in the chest wall to detect and generate electrical impulse. This is accomplished by leads placed in the heart that can sense a cardiac disturbance. The primary purpose of the ICD is to shock the heart in order to restore the patient's normal heart rhythm.

Interventional cardiac catheterization

During a heart attack, patients often undergo an emergency heart catheterization to quickly restore blood flow to the heart muscle. Most often, a balloon-tipped catheter is positioned within the narrowed artery, then inflated to press open the blockage. Once blood flow is restored, the catheter is removed, leaving nothing in the body.

The time between a patient’s arrival to the hospital and the first balloon inflation is known as “door-to-balloon time.” Any delay in door-to-balloon time is associated with higher mortality. The current national target is 90 minutes. Parkview Heart Institute’s door-to-balloon time is consistently well below that national industry standard.

Coronary balloon angioplasty

Coronary balloon angioplasty, also known as percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA), is a non-emergency procedure used to re-open narrowed heart arteries. Patients whose chest pain has not been relieved by medications are generally the best candidates for PTCA.  Coronary angioplasty is performed as a scheduled procedure or while treating a patient with a heart attack in process.

Coronary stent

Similar to coronary angioplasty, a tiny balloon is used to compress plaque build-up into the artery walls. Then, a small metal stent is then used to maintain the newly opened artery. The stent is a tiny, stainless steel device. The stent is placed in the narrowed artery and expanded to restore the flow of blood to the heart muscle. In a matter of weeks, tissue forms over the stent and it becomes a permanent support for the artery.

By-pass surgery

Heart bypass surgery is frequently performed to treat heart disease when your coronary arteries are blocked. With this procedure, your doctor treats the problem by giving the blood a new pathway to the heart.

During coronary artery bypass graft surgery (also called CABG, or "cabbage") a blood vessel is removed from one area of the body and placed around the problem area or areas to "bypass" the blockages and restore blood flow to the heart muscle. This vessel is called a graft.

These substitute blood vessels can come from your chest, legs or arms. They're safe to use because there are other pathways that take blood to and from those areas of the body.

Heart bypass surgery is one of the most commonly performed surgeries in the United States.

Robotic surgery

The da Vinci® Robotic System offers a less invasive alternative for some heart surgeries, such as mitral valve repairs.

With the da Vinci system, surgeons can perform closed-chest heart and lung surgery by entering the patient’s chest through three small incisions, called ports, each about the size of a keyhole. One port is for the endoscope, a tiny camera attached to a fiber-optic cable. The other two ports allow access for the robot’s pencil-sized arms and “fingers” that mimic the movements of the surgeon’s forearms and wrists.

Surgeons move the instruments inside the patient’s chest with greater accuracy and greater range of motion than humanly possible without this technology.

da Vinci® Surgical System is a registered trademark of Intuitive Surgical, Inc.

 

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