Froedtert & the Medical College Test New Heart Imaging Technology
Milwaukee (Oct. 8, 2007) — Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin are home to one of just seven major medical centers in the country to test new heart imaging technology. The technology, created by Philips Medical and released to the market in July 2007, could drastically improve the way patients with heart problems are diagnosed. For the first time, live 3D technology has been transitioned to a transesophageal echocardiography probe (TEE), enabling cardiologists, cardiac surgeons and cardiac interventionalists to view new depths of data.
“It was immediately clear that our patients are going to get a more accurate diagnosis as a result of the technology,” said Timothy Woods, MD, director of Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin’s Valvular Disease Clinic and Echocardiography Laboratory.
Some of the first patients Woods evaluated with the technology were those suffering from heart valve problems. “If a patient has mitral valve disease and is going to be operated on, it is crucial that we do everything we can to save the valve. This technology allows the cardiologist and surgeon to better estimate the chances of repairing a valve as opposed to replacing it when surgery is being considered. ”
In addition to a more accurate diagnosis for valvular disease patients, Woods found the best uses for the Philips 3D TEE to be in diagnosing conditions related to congenital heart disease and in viewing masses in the heart. The new probe allows physicians to view the entire pathology of the heart. It also offers more perspectives of the heart, including the surgeon’s view (a perspective of the mitral valve from the left atrium as well as the left ventricle).
Woods said the real time 3D views of the heart offer the ability to see the heart in 3D at the same time imaging is occurring. Additionally, the new technology allows him to capture the entire image of the heart in just 10 seconds. He can then manipulate the pictures from numerous angles, allowing for a thorough review after the patient has gone home.
The previous technology required the cardiologist to piece together thin slices of the heart to re-create its entire structure mentally.
During the one-month testing period in September 2007, Woods and his staff used the new probe to help diagnose 15 patients. Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin intend to purchase the technology in early 2008.
According to Philips Medical, the six additional medical centers testing the new technology are:
- The University of Chicago Medical Center, Chicago
- Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston
- Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York
- Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
- The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland
- Duke University Medical Center, Raleigh Durham
Author: Brian Dorrington
Last Review Date: Oct. 8, 2007