HIGH TECH

What’s new at our area hos­pi­tals

201 Health - - Technology - COM­PILED BY SAM PASSOW

The Val­ley Hos­pi­tal A NEW WAY TO CLEAR AR­TER­IES

The Val­ley Hos­pi­tal in Ridgewood was the first hos­pi­tal in New Jer­sey to use a re­cently ap­proved de­vice that of­fers a min­i­mally-in­va­sive ap­proach to the treat­ment of pe­riph­eral artery dis­ease (PAD) in the up­per leg, a se­ri­ous and com­mon con­di­tion as­so­ci­ated with an in­creased risk for heart attack and stroke.

The pro­ce­dure uses drug-coated bal­loons, a new type of med­i­cal de­vice de­vel­oped to treat PAD in the up­per legs once med­i­cal man­age­ment has failed. Vas­cu­lar sur­geons Dr. Joshua Bern­heim, Dr. Daniel Char, direc­tor of vas­cu­lar surgery, and Dr. Mi­tul S. Pa­tel suc­cess­fully per­formed the first pro­ce­dures at the hos­pi­tal.

“The new drug-coated bal­loons rep­re­sent a real game changer for pa­tients,” Char says. “Other min­i­mally in­va­sive pro­ce­dures have been as­so­ci­ated with the need for re­peat pro­ce­dures within six to 12 months be­cause the plaque build-up re­turns to the ves­sel wall. The med­i­ca­tion that coats this bal­loon and is left be­hind fol­low­ing the pro­ce­dure re­duces this risk for re­peat pro­ce­dures.”

Af­fect­ing an es­ti­mated eight to 12 mil­lion peo­ple in the U.S., PAD is a de­bil­i­tat­ing dis­ease that oc­curs when ar­ter­ies be­come nar­rowed or blocked by plaque build-up, re­strict­ing blood flow. The pain can be de­scribed as dull, caus­ing a heav­i­ness or tight­ness in the mus­cles, but of­ten will stop when the per­son is at rest.

Drug-coated bal­loons are de­signed to help re­store blood flow by re­open­ing blocked ar­ter­ies and de­liv­er­ing a med­i­ca­tion to the artery wall that clin­i­cal stud­ies have shown helps keep the artery open longer than other avail­able ther­a­pies. Dur­ing the pro­ce­dure, an in­flated bal­loon pushes the plaque away to cre­ate a chan­nel for blood flow. The med­i­ca­tion on the bal­loon sur­face is ab­sorbed into the artery wall. The bal­loon is then re­moved with only the med­i­ca­tion left be­hind.

Hack­en­sack Uni­ver­sity Med­i­cal Cen­ter

ROBOT KILLS GERMS AND BAC­TE­RIA

Hack­en­sack Uni­ver­sity Med­i­cal Cen­ter is em­ploy­ing the germ-zap­ping Xenex robot to re­duce the risk of health care as­so­ci­ated in­fec­tions. Us­ing a pow­er­ful ul­tra­vi­o­let light, the Xenex robot is de­signed to de­stroy viruses, bac­te­ria and bac­te­rial spores lin­ger­ing on sur­faces.

“We have al­ways been com­mit­ted to find­ing in­no­va­tive ways to stay ahead of the curve in clin­i­cal ex­cel­lence and tech­nol­ogy,” Kunle Modupe, vice pres­i­dent of hos­pi­tal­ity ser­vices at HackensackUMC, says. “This col­lab­o­ra­tion com­bines both in an ef­fec­tive and safe man­ner.”

The robot, named Vi­o­let by HackensackUMC’s En­vi­ron­men­tal Ser­vices team, emits ul­tra­vi­o­let light de­signed to de­stroy viruses, bac­te­ria and bac­te­rial spores on sur­faces within min­utes. With­out con­tact or chem­i­cals, the robot is cred­ited with killing micro­organ­isms, in­clud­ing Clostrid­ium dif­fi­cile (C. diff), norovirus, in­fluenza, and staph bac­te­ria, in­clud­ing Methi­cillin-re­sis­tant Sta­phy­lo­coc­cus aureus (MRSA).

The robot works alone, room-by-room, on an au­to­mated se­quence of cy­cles. It con­tains no mer­cury or hy­dro­gen per­ox­ide and is de­scribed as the only green tech­nol­ogy used in au­to­mated room dis­in­fec­tion.

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