A new Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory is currently under construction and scheduled to open later this summer at the James Family Heart Center at Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) West. The new Cath Lab includes technology so advanced that it is currently available in only a few hospitals nationwide. This technology will also make YRMC’s new Cath Lab the first of its kind in Arizona.

“The Cath Lab technology is called both world-class technology and world-first technology,” said Lauren Weedon, RN, MSN, Director of Cardiovascular Services at YRMC. “The Cath Lab will be an excellent addition to the Heart Center and for the people we care for throughout our region.”

When it opens, the Heart Center Cath Lab will join two other outstanding Cath Labs at YRMC West. The new Cath Lab is a planned addition to serve patients of YRMC’s Heart Center, including its growing Structural Heart Program.

Two Innovative Technologies
YRMC’s Cath Labs are equipped with exceptional diagnostic imaging equipment. Interventional cardiologists – specialists who perform non-surgical heart procedures – use that technology to visualize the heart’s arteries, vessels and chambers in order to pinpoint disorders. These physicians then treat their patients’ conditions using imaging equipment to guide and place heart stents, for example.

The Heart Center’s new Cath Lab will feature these two imaging innovations:

  • The Azurion Angiography Operating System – Patients who have undergone past Cath Lab procedures will recognize the angiography operating system as the table they lie on while a C-shaped arm glides around them taking x-ray images. The Heart Center’s Azurion operating system will not only take x-ray images but it also will gather ultrasound images. All of these images will be combined into a single, three-dimensional view of patients’ hearts. Approximately 100 of these Philips operating systems are currently available in the United States.
  • The EchoNavigator – This technology introduces “road mapping,” which combines the Azurion’s three-dimensional images into a clear and detailed “map” of a patient’s heart. For the first time, physicians will see three-dimensional images of the heart: vessels, valves, leaflets and more in real-time. At the same time, the technology gives interventional cardiologists a sharp view of the catheter or heart implant they are guiding during an angiography procedure.

“Road mapping allows our interventional cardiologists to overlay all of the heart’s structures and compare them on a single screen,” Weedon said. “This is new technology that I’m confident will one day become the standard of care.”

Technology and Talent
Offering the latest technology is critical to YRMC’s Heart Center, but there’s more to the equation, according to Weedon.

“It’s about the technology and the talent,” she said. “The Heart Center has an incredible team of physicians, nurses and radiologic technologists. These professionals are constantly learning and striving to do their very best. And they do this for our patients.”

For more information on YRMC’s heart services, visit the James Family Heart Center.