For Release Upon Receipt                                 June 26, 2000

Sharon Regional opens first phase of new Heart Institute

Sharon Regional Health System recently completed the installation, and is now using its new $1,265,000 designated Philips cardiac catheterization suite, which represents the first phase of the Health System’s new Heart Institute.

The new Integris H5000F cardiac cath lab was manufactured by Philips Medical Systems North America and is the most technologically advanced cardiac imaging system available today.

Cardiac catheterizations enable Sharon Regional cardiologists to perform an angiogram, a diagnostic procedure that evaluates blood flow through the veins and arteries of the heart. During this procedure, a long thin tube called a catheter is inserted through the patient’s leg, and using X-ray guidance, is advanced to the area of interest. Once the site is located, a contrast agent (dye) is injected and computer assisted digital X-ray images are recorded to aid in diagnosis.

Sharon Regional initiated the availability of cardiac caths in Mercer County in 1992, and today performs more than 700 low risk cardiac caths each year. Following the opening of the second phase of the Heart Institute in late July, which will include open heart surgery, valve replacements, and other heart surgical procedures, the new cath lab will also be used for highly advanced cardiac catheterizations, angioplasty, stents, rotoblator procedures, and more. Having open heart surgery available within the Heart Institute will also allow Sharon Regional cardiologists to promptly perform rescue angioplasty, the treatment of choice for patients having a heart attack due to the blockage of blood vessels.

Sharon Regional is now in the process of replacing its original Toshiba cardiac cath unit with a new $1,296,000 second Philips cath lab. This will give cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons at Sharon Regional’s Heart Institute access to two cardiac cath labs, and the only advanced cath lab in Mercer County.

James Ryan, M.D., cardiologist and medical director of the Heart Institute’s cath labs, praised the features and benefits of the new system. “This is truly the premier cardiac catheterization system available on the market today,” stated Dr. Ryan. “When we move from the low risk cath procedures into the advanced cases, patients from this area will truly have access to tertiary level technology right here, close to home.”

The new Philips cardiac cath suite offers a number of benefits over other cath units. The Philips Integris H5000F, with its highly efficient X-ray tube as well as the patented SpectraBeam X-ray filtration system, reduces the patient’s scatter radiation dosage 50% or more without compromising diagnostic image quality.

Another patented feature of the Philips system is body sensing technology, in which sensors guide the movement of the X-ray stand by determining how close the stand is to the patient. This allows the stand to move very quickly and safely to the precise area of interest, speeding the procedure and thus reducing the amount of time the patient spends on the cath table.

In addition, the Integris H5000F employs Philips’ CCD (charged-coupled device) camera, sophisticated technology used in medical imaging for improved overall performance and image quality.

For more Information call our Health Information Center at :
(724) 983-5518 or 800-346-7997