News | July 14, 2008

Record 'Door-to-Balloon' Time at Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas

July 15, 2008 – Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas broke its door-to-balloon time record with a 28-minute turn around time after a man suffering a heart attack recently came into the ER and was treated with an angioplasty procedure in the hospital’s cardiac catheterization lab.

The procedure, performed by Dr. Kenneth Saland, an interventional cardiologist at Presbyterian, illustrates the importance of providing treatments in a safe, rapid way to those suffering heart attacks.

“Research shows that the quicker a heart attack is treated the less potential damage there is to the heart muscle,” Dr. Saland said. “Preserving more heart muscle helps the patient survive the heart attack and improves the long-term survival and quality of life for patients.”

Major clinical studies, endorsed by the American Heart Association, have shown treating heart attack patients within 90 minutes of arrival significantly reduces damage to the heart muscle.

“Not only is this the best time ever for our hospital, it ranks among the best times regionally and nationally,” said Jon Gardner, Presbyterian’s director of the heart and vascular service line. “But the record isn’t what’s important. The importance of this is that it’s another example of the commitment by physicians on the hospital’s medical staff, the EMS personnel, and our emergency room and cardiovascular staff at Presbyterian to provide evidence-based health care in an efficient, quality way.”

Recently, a separate door-to-balloon time at Presbyterian reached the 31-minute mark. During spring 2008, 14 consecutive emergency angioplasty procedures were performed within the 90-minute door-to-balloon timeframe.

The emergency room also plays a critical role in the process, since that is where heart-attack patients typically arrive. “That’s the front door of the hospital, so providing rapid cardiac assessments and efficiently communicating with the cath lab is critical to achieving our goal,” Gardner said.

Annually, more than 1 million people undergo angioplasty in the U.S., according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

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