Impacting Patients: Improving Care and Treatment

As the St. Louis region’s exclusive alliance provider of the nation’s #1 heart hospital, Cleveland Clinic’s Sydell and Arnold Miller Family Heart & Vascular Institute, St. Luke’s is nationally recognized for its cardiac care. From its inception, St. Luke’s Heart & Vascular Institute has been instrumental in creating an environment in which patient-focused collaboration and growth are not only endorsed, but thrives.

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The St. Luke’s Heart & Vascular Institute
PICTURED, FIRST ROW, FROM LEFT: Jackie Grosklos, MD; Jorge Alegre, MD; Ronald Leidenfrost, MD; Craig Reiss, MD; Jeremy Leidenfrost, MD; Maged Haikal, MD; Bakr Salem, MD; Julianne Donnelly, MD. SECOND ROW: Keelara Gopalan, MD ; Jonas Cooper, MD; Siddhesh Gowda, MD; Andrea Moyer, MD; Joseph Craft, III, MD; J. Mauricio Sanchez, MD; Heidi Coco, DO; James Ellison, MD; Morton Rinder, MD; Daryl Jacobs, MD. THIRD ROW: Glenn Davison, MD; Vikram Agarwal, MD; Patricia Cole, MD; William Phillips; Clark McKenzie, MD; Stephen Pieper, MD; Paul Robiolio, MD; Keith Mankowitz, MD; Edward Hurley, MD; Michael Ryan Reidy, MD.

Providing greater accuracy and reduced exam times in cardiac imaging

The St. Luke’s Hospital Heart & Vascular Institute is currently the only hospital in the region offering the cardiac positron emission tomography (PET) myocardial perfusion imaging exam to patients who have symptoms or risk factors for heart disease.

Cardiac PET myocardial perfusion imaging exam offers a complete gated rest/stress cardiac PET procedure which can be performed in as little as 30 minutes, supplies a substantially lower radiation dose than with other methods, performs well for patients with inconclusive previous stress tests and has the greatest accuracy of all stress testing.

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Vikram Agarwal, MD, Director of Non-Invasive Cardiology and Cardiovascular Imaging

New CT scan technology improves image quality with reduced radiation

The Dual Source FORCE CT Scanner is a state-of-the-art technology that has two CT tubes that are positioned 90° from each other. By operating the tubes at different voltages, it enables superior image quality while decreas ing the radiation dose. Since we are able to minimize radiation dose and maximize image quality, we can more accurately detect the first signs of cancer and earlier signs of heart disease. Several significant patient quality features with this new technology are that it delivers resolution high enough that patients can breathe freely during their scan and can scan a chest in less than one second. For our cardiac patients, this is also significant because the increased scan speed has allowed us to reduce the amount of medications that are needed to control the heart rate as we are able to scan the entire heart in one heartbeat.

Combating chemotherapy-induced hair loss Paxman Scalp Cooling

The St. Luke’s Women’s Center adopted the Paxman Scalp Cooling System as an effective way of combating chemotherapy-induced hair loss that can result in completely preserving the hair or at least a high level of hair retention. For patients undergoing chemotherapy, this system provides the opportunity to regain some control, maintain their privacy and encourage a positive attitude towards treatment.

Paxman features the highest levels of clinical efficacy, hospital safety and is specifically designed to meet the needs of both patients and nursing staff.

Minimally invasive hip replacement offers patients more than just a shorter incision

Total hip replacement with anterior approach allows minimal disruption to muscle and tendon, making the surgery less traumatic for patients. The procedure, performed by Dr. Brian Wegman of Woods Mill Orthopedics, also reduces hospital stays, recovery time and there are minimal hip precautions immediately after surgery. The anterior approach goes between muscles to expose the hip joint which leaves your muscles attached to the femur, in contrast to other approaches that split or cut muscles and tendons to the hip during surgery. The typical incision is about four inches long on the front of the hip (which could vary based on the patient’s size).

Reducing radiation exposure with flouroscopy

Cardiac electrophysiologist, Dr. Jose Sanchez, is the first and only physician in the St. Louis area who uses fluoroless catheter ablation to treat arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats) in patients with atrial fibrillation. This groundbreaking technique greatly reduces exposure to radiation for patients and his lab team. Since 2014, he has performed more than 1,000 ablations without fluoroscopy.

Reducing the risk of stroke in people with atrial fibrillation

The WATCHMAN™ left atrial appendage closure device is used to decrease stroke risk in patients with atrial fibrillation without having to use blood thinners. The device is implanted in a hospital setting, followed by overnight observation. WATCHMAN™ is the only FDA-approved implant proven to reduce stroke risk in people with atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem (also referred to as non-valvular AFib).

Improving the patient experience through facility improvements

St. Luke’s has also made a significant investment in technology and facility improvements on both campuses. At St. Luke’s Des Peres Hospital, we have added seven surgical video towers, two echocardiography machines and EMG equipment, while also renovating the main lobby, chapel and waiting rooms for the ICU, OR and radiology.

New technology at St. Luke’s Hospital includes a new CT scanner and cardiac PET. In addition, we have renovated the radiology waiting room, 7th floor, central sterile processing and the nursing office. The expansion of the electrophysiology area and the new cooling towers are underway.

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Arthroscopy video tower at St. Luke’s Des Peres Hospital.

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