Nebraska Heart Institute Is First In Nebraska

September 3, 2009; For immediate release – Recently, the Nebraska Heart Institute was the first program in Nebraska to implant a new pacemaker equipped with wireless technology that can notify physicians of changes in a patient’s device or condition. This new technology, developed by St. Jude Medical, improves patient care and allows device follow-up more efficiently and with greater convenience for both patient and physician.

Pradipta Chaudhuri, MD, cardiologist with Nebraska Heart Institute, implanted the Accent RF pacemaker to monitor the patient’s heart and provide electronic stimulation when the heart beats too slowly. “The Accent RF pacemaker enables me to monitor my patient’s device from the patient’s home,” says Chaudhuri. “On scheduled check-up dates, data from the pacemaker is sent wirelessly, in a hands-free manner and without disturbing the patient. This data is then viewed by me or another clinician.”

The new device features RF telemetry that enables secure, wireless communication between the implanted device and the clinician; making it the first integrated system of pacing devices with wireless telemetry from implant through follow-up. Wireless communication is used when clinicians implant the device and during follow-up appointments that can be performed in the clinic or via remote monitoring from the patient’s home.

In addition to regular device follow-up appointments, wireless communication enables the device to automatically alert physicians to important changes with the device or the patient’s heart rhythm, in between scheduled device checks. “The automatic alerts enhance my ability to manage my patient’s heart conditions and disease progression,” says Chaudhuri. “Managing disease progression is particularly important for patients with heart failure.”

The alerts feature helps to better assist physicians in accurately diagnosing and managing patients with abnormal rhythms in the heart. Cardiac pacemakers are used to treat bradycardia, which is a heart rate that is too slow. These devices monitor the heart and provide electrical stimulation when the heart beats too slowly for each patient’s specific physiological requirements.

According to Chaudhuri, the alert function helps to reassure patients that the clinician will be notified if something has changed with their device or their condition is worsening. Chaudhuri also notes that “patients realize greater convenience when they don’t have to come into the office for routine device checks.”

The Nebraska Heart Institute, founded in 1987, provides unparalleled state-of-the-art cardiac, vascular and thoracic care services. In addition to offices in Lincoln, Grand Island, Hastings, Columbus and North Platte Nebraska, the 19 cardiologists and five surgeons with NHI visit more than 40 clinics throughout Nebraska and Kansas. In 2003, Nebraska Heart Institute founded the state’s first heart-exclusive hospital, the Nebraska Heart Hospital, located in southeast Lincoln. The 63-bed, state-of-the-art facility provides patients and families throughout the region with leading-edge services delivered in a caring environment.

Together, the Nebraska Heart Institute clinic services and the Heart Hospital ensure patient access to quality health care, superior outcomes and a place where patient do come first.

For more information, contact:
J Hoffman
Nebraska Heart Institute & Heart Hospital

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