Tuesday, April 23, 2013

CoxHealth advances cardiac care with hybrid OR

Just last week, CoxHealth physicians and staff conducted the first procedures in the health system’s new hybrid operating room – a specially constructed OR with all the traditional operating room capabilities, plus the advanced imaging equipment found in a cardiac catheterization lab. By combining these resources, CoxHealth physicians are able to perform a range of life-saving procedures in a state-of-the-art environment that’s setting the industry standard for patient care.

“A hybrid OR is ideal for complex vascular cases, including traumas,” said Becky Watts, administrative director of CoxHealth Cardiovascular Services. “Trauma patients can go directly to the hybrid OR where our enhanced imaging capabilities can diagnose vascular issues and then treatment can begin immediately in the same room,” she said. Cox Medical Center South, where the hybrid OR is located, is a Level I Trauma Center. 

In addition to trauma care, physicians are using the hybrid OR to perform a variety of vascular procedures, and on May 15 are scheduled to do the health system’s first transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). TAVR allows surgeons to replace a patient’s aortic valve via catheter, rather than through the traditional open heart surgery method. This minimally invasive method offers a number of benefits to patients, including shorter recovery time and less post-procedure pain. According to Watts, the greatest benefit is that patients who are not candidates for an open procedure to repair or replace their valves now have an option for treatment. 

The hybrid OR also supports CoxHealth’s new Acute Aortic Treatment Center, the first in the area. The center brings together emergency department physicians, anesthesiologists, radiologists, cardiovascular surgeons and the surgical team to quickly identify patients with ruptured aortic aneurysms, a life-threatening condition that can quickly lead to death if prompt treatment is not received. The Acute Aortic Treatment Center and the capabilities of the new hybrid OR allow CoxHealth caregivers to rapidly diagnose a ruptured aneurysm and provide the quick treatment these patients need. 

The new OR is more than 1,000 square feet in size, and features imaging equipment on ceiling-mounted booms that allow for superior movement and flexibility. Watts said this allows physicians and staff to capture images from a variety of angles, providing a superior view of the patient and their condition. The hybrid operating room also includes nearly a dozen large, flat screen panels that can display a patient’s previous imaging results with images currently being captured in the OR, the patient’s vital signs and even their medical record. 

“We’ve designed this room so that no matter where you are standing, you can see the information you need to care for the patient,” said Watts. “It really is state-of-the-art patient care.”