“It looks like something out of Star Trek!” That’s what visitors have been saying as they tour the control room of the new CHOC Children’s Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories, which open next month. And yes, our state-of-the-art facilities are quite impressive. In fact, the CHOC Heart Institute is one of the few pediatric facilities in Southern California equipped with completely brand-new, state-of-the-art, pediatric-focused medical technology.
CHOC Children’s treats virtually all forms of congenital and acquired heart disease, from before birth through adolescence. Our pediatric cardiologists are pioneering catheter-based techniques that replace conventional open-heart surgery for some complex disorders. What’s happening at CHOC is far more exciting than science fiction.
Congenital heart disorders occur in about nine of every 1,000 newborns. Of these, 25 percent will require invasive treatment within the first year of life. CHOC pediatric cardiologists perform 400 interventional procedures each year with outcomes exceeding the national average for quality and safety.
Many heart conditions that formerly required open-heart surgery may now be treated using less-invasive, catheter-based techniques. The CHOC Children’s Heart Institute features two cardiac catheterization labs, including a “hybrid” lab that may incorporate aspects of conventional surgery, as needed. Each cardiac catheterization lab is equipped with the most advanced medical imaging technology available:
• Toshiba Infinix-i biplane cardiac catheterization system, providing multiple views of the heart while reducing radiation exposure to the patient.
• Philips iE33 3-D echocardiography, for noninvasive 3-D images of the heart.
• 1.5 and 3.0 TESLA 3-D magnetic resonance (MR) and computed tomographic (CT) angiography, showing blood flow within arteries and veins around the heart and lungs.
And if one picture is worth a thousand words, how about 16 clear images displayed on a 65-inch, medical-grade, LED screen? Our cardiology team will be able to view any diagnostic image, plus other vital information live from a patient’s electronic medical record while performing procedures.
New “Home” For All CHOC Heart Services
Opening in mid-March, the CHOC Heart Institute in the Bill Holmes Tower provides all cardiology services within one convenient, pediatric-focused environment. This includes our specialty outpatient cardiology programs:
Arrhythmia Device Center —pacemaker management, implantable event recorders and miniature ambulatory EKG monitors.
Diagnostic Cardiac Stress Testing —pediatric ergometer and treadmill stress-testing, and cardiopulmonary exercise testing.
Interdisciplinary Clinics — for children experiencing cardiac effects related to other medical conditions, including muscular dystrophy, cancer, metabolic disorders and red blood cell disorders.
Maternal-fetal diagnostic testing —for high-risk pregnancies.
Sports Medicine & Community Education —our Life-Threatening Events Associated With Pediatric Sports (LEAPS) program is a unique, nationally recognized sudden cardiac arrest screening, prevention and surveillance program for active youth in Orange County.
Additionally, every detail of the CHOC Heart Institute has been designed with patients and their families in mind. Colorful floor tiles, soothing bubble-columns and natural lighting, along with our certified cardiac nurses, cardiac nurse practitioners, social workers and Child Life specialists, help ease the stress and anxiety of a hospital visit.
For more information about the CHOC Heart Institute, visit http://www.choc.org/heart/index.cfm or call 714-509-9200.
- Ella underwent heart surgery at CHOC Children’s when she was just 7 months old to correct her coarctation of the aorta. Today, she’s thriving.
- Veer was born with a hole in his heart, and needed surgery to repair it when he was four years old. Today, he’s thriving.
- Palpitations, also known as irregular heartbeats, are most likely caused by non-heart-related triggers. A pediatric cardiologist explains when they’re a sign of something more.