KCH Performs first Cardiac Cath
May 13, 2009
After five years of diligent planning, the first cardiac catheterization angiography was done successfully at Kishwaukee Community Hospital on May 7.
“After all the preparation and work it required to reach this milestone, the hospital administration as well as its medical and nursing staffs are very proud of this accomplishment,” said Brad Copple, KCH administrator.
“We anticipate that approximately 200 such procedures will be done at KCH in the next year. No longer do patients need to travel long distances to receive this service,” Copple said.
Cardiac catheterization is a non-surgical technique that allows diagnosis and treatment of coronary blockages. While cardiac cath is new at KCH, the team that performed it has more than 50 years’ experience among them doing similar and more complex procedures, said Dr. Asim Nisar, interventional cardiologist and medical director of the hospital’s Cardiovascular Services. The cath lab staff was carefully selected over several years based on their experience and expertise.
Barbara Twombly was the hospital’s first cardiac catheterization patient. The procedure took only 15 minutes to complete. “I was very comfortable having this procedure done locally,” Barbara said. “It was a very pleasant experience.”
She returned to the hospital three days later for her follow-up visit with Dr. Nisar, and stopped by the catheterization laboratory to have her picture taken with the staff.
"We wanted to make sure Barbara's procedure went flawlessly, and thanks to the exhaustive preparation, we were able to accomplish our goal,” Dr. Nisar said.
“Barbara and her husband, Robert, asked all the right questions and took the time to feel comfortable with me and with my assurances that I was highly confident about success,” he said.
Barbara, 68, said she has been fighting high cholesterol and high blood pressure and has a family history of heart disease. In April, she took advantage of the hospital’s Heartwise Cardiac Health Evaluation, a screening that includes a computed tomography (CT) heart scan to identify calcification in the coronary arteries that could be an indication of blockage. “My calcium score was pretty high,” she said. “Dr. Shah, my internist, referred me to Dr. Nisar.”
Dr. Jagdish Patel, cardiologist on the KCH medical staff for 12 years, was in the control room at the time of the procedure and was all smiles because he had envisioned such a procedure being done at KCH many years ago.
Two of Dr. Patel's patients had angiograms a few days later on May 11. "The community should feel confident about this service. The expertise, the technology and the lab in the new hospital are of the highest quality,” Dr. Patel said.
Starting June 1, the hospital expects to have an on-call team ready 24 hours a day for all emergencies, including the immediate care of those patients coming to the hospital for heart attack symptoms.
Copple added that the hospital is committed to advancing the level of cardiac care for the community. "Prevention and treatment of heart disease has been an important element of our planning for years. We anticipate the need for such services to increase steadily, and feel that the community's resources are being spent judiciously. Most importantly, we are expanding and enhancing our cardiac capabilities to better serve our community,” he said.