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First Patients Undergo Wentworth-Douglass’ New CardioMEMS Procedure

A sensor that monitors heart failure was successfully implanted in three patients at Wentworth-Douglass Hospital Thursday, becoming the hospital’s first recipients of a device aimed at dramatically improving their quality of life and reducing their office visits and hospital stays.

The CardioMEMS sensor is implanted through a simple right heart catherization in a same-day procedure. The device, the size of a paperclip, allows the patients to monitor pressure changes that indicate heart failure 14-21 days before they begin feeling the effects of these changes. This allows clinicians to address pressure changes through simple adjustments to care, often without requiring an appointment with the patient.

Wayne Taylor is one of the first patients undergoing the procedure. He has been a patient at Wentworth-Douglass for more than five years.

“I’m so happy to be receiving the CardioMEMS device,” Wayne said. “I’m hoping it will help me stay healthy by letting the Heart Failure team know if I’m retaining fluids so they can make the best adjustments for my health. My cardiology team is fantastic. If it wasn’t for them, I feel I wouldn’t still be around.”

Dr. Greg Imbrie, of Wentworth Health Partners Cardiology, was the interventionalist who implanted the sensors.

“I’m excited because this will bring Wentworth-Douglass to the forefront of heart failure management on the seacoast,” Dr. Imbrie said. “Not only will patients benefit from the CardioMEMS device, but our hospital takes it a step further and provides patients with continued monitoring, education, and support to help them achieve the best possible outcomes.”

“I’m hoping for the improvement of quality of life for these patients. When you sit with them, they want to be spending time at home and they want to feel better. Sometimes we have to send them for more testing, this is going to allow them to stay at home, monitor their pressures, and we can guide them and make adjustments while they’re in an environment they’re comfortable with,” said Christine Oliveira, APRN, of the Heart Failure Clinic.

The Abbott’s CardioMEMS HF System was made possible at Wentworth-Douglass through the generosity of multiple donors raising $210,000, including David and Karen Della Penta and Vice Chairman of the Wentworth-Douglass Foundation Board of Directors, Richard Conley, and his wife Jan.

“My wife and I have focused on cardiology and heart failure because it’s one of the number one medical issues people are faced with and as we get older, we have many more friends encountering heart issues. We’re blessed to be in a position where we can take some of our savings and donate it to an organization like Wentworth-Douglass and have it applied directly to a situation that we’re familiar with and that we care about,” Conley said. “We want to make sure that we have the tools necessary to keep Wentworth-Douglass the best that it can possibly be.”

Those interesting in learning more about this program can visit the hospital’s website or contact the Heart Failure Team at the Center for Heart Health at (603) 609-6417.

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