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Media Contact: Tom Grant

Published on April 20, 2011

Doctors at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital Perform Its First Minimally Invasive Repair of a Ruptured Thoracoabdominal Aneurysm

Rockville, MD – Vascular surgeons have performed Shady Grove Adventist Hospital’s first minimally invasive repair of a ruptured thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm (TAAA). This is a life-threatening, often fatal, condition. The patient in this case returned home in just 36 hours, compared to weeks or months with traditional aortic aneurysm surgery.

An aortic aneurysm is a weakening of the major artery in the body, called the aorta, which leads to a ballooning out of the artery. As the wall of aorta bulges, it weakens and can eventually rupture. In a thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm, such as the one involved with Shady Grove Adventist Hospital’s recent surgery, the aneurysm started in the chest area and extended into the abdomen.

“A rupture of this type of aneurysm is usually fatal,” said Jeffrey Wang, M.D., the vascular surgeon who led this procedure at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital. “In our recent case, we were able to use the latest technology in endografts and covered stents to preserve blood flow to the intestines, kidneys, spleen and liver while fixing the thoracoabdominal aneurysm. By using the minimally-invasive endovascular procedure, we prevented a large incision from the patient’s chest to abdomen which allowed the patient to better tolerate and survive the procedure and ultimately recover more quickly.”

The patient, an 88-year-old resident of Gaithersburg, Maryland, was discharged from the hospital less than two days after the minimally invasive endovascular surgery. By contrast, open surgery, typically performed for aneurysm ruptures, would have been more extensive, with a longer stay in the hospital for weeks to even months.

“We had a highly skilled team of radiology technicians, nurses and physicians working on this emergency groundbreaking procedure to make it a success and save the patient’s life,” said Robert Fox, M.D., vascular surgeon at Shady Grove, who co-managed the case. “We are gratified to have provided this high-quality care to the patient and help him return home faster.”

“We are pleased to be able to offer the highest capabilities for vascular patients right here in our community,” said Dennis Hansen, President of Shady Grove Adventist Hospital. Shady Grove’s Vascular Services provide complex endovascular and open aortic repairs of both the chest and abdomen, carotid surgery and stenting, the latest in minimally invasive interventions, and diagnostic capabilities that include the latest in vascular imaging – ultrasound, CT and MRA. The Department also works closely with a comprehensive Wound Care Center that combines the expertise of vascular surgeons, general surgeons, plastic surgeons, podiatrists and infectious disease doctors in a collaborative effort to heal difficult wounds.

The Surgical Services Department at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital has 16 state-of-the-art operating rooms in a 100,000 square foot space that opened in 2008. In 2010, the department performed more than 14,000 complex and same-day surgeries for both adults and children.

“At Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, our surgeons have the ability and the commitment to provide quality care to our surgical patients using the latest in modern medicine and technology,” said Eileen Prinkey, Director of Perioperative Services.

Shady Grove Adventist Hospital is a not-for-profit, acute care facility in Rockville, Maryland, with 336 licensed beds. Shady Grove is committed to delivering excellent health care through a ministry of physical, mental and spiritual healing. The hospital offers a broad range of health services and is recognized for excellence in emergency care; high-risk obstetrical and neonatal care; cardiac and vascular interventional care; oncology care; several surgical specialties; and a number of specialized services for children. The Shady Grove Adventist Emergency Center in Germantown provides emergency medical care to more than 35,000 residents each year. Shady Grove Adventist Hospital is part of Maryland-based Adventist HealthCare, an integrated health-care delivery system that is one of the largest employers in the state of Maryland.

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