HeartCare Midwest Specialty Clinics
HeartCare Midwest Offers the four following specialty clinics to help patients with special needs or conditions cope with challenges and take charge of their health.
Heart Failure/Pulmonary Hypertension Clinic
Heart Failure is a condition that results from a damaged or weakened heart muscle. It does not mean that the heart has stopped working. Rather, it is a common condition that usually develops gradually when the heart does not pump enough blood to meet the needs of the body. People with heart failure may benefit from close management of the condition resulting in improved function of the heart and a better quality of life. The Heart Failure Clinic offers:
Specially trained cardiologists lead a team consisting of nurse practitioners, registered nurses and a dietitian.
By understanding the condition, a patient can make necessary adjustments to his or her lifestyle and manage symptoms better. We have the educational tools to provide that knowledge, and we offer individualized attention to help patients understand this condition.
Full Scope of Care
From everything to newly diagnosed Class I patients through heart transplant evaluations, our team of specialists takes on cases at all levels of heart failure.
Nurses maintain frequent telephone contact with patients so they can answer questions, check conditions and continue education. Home monitoring technology is available to facilitate even closer monitoring.
Heart Failure Research
HeartCare Midwest participates in a variety of clinical research studies that may offer the opportunity to use medications not otherwise available to patients. This allows the heart failure team to remain on the cutting edge of treatment.
The heart failure team is closely linked to the Downstate Heart Transplant program which can offer advanced care such as mechanical support and heart transplants.
Anticoagulation Management Clinic
HeartCare Midwest serves more than 1,100 patients and has been managing protimes (the measure of how thick or thin the blood is) in our Anticoagulation Clinic since December 1998. The clinic is managed by registered nurses and an office assistant. If you take the blood thinner warfarin (also known commonly as Coumadin), your HeartCare Midwest physician can refer you to the clinic.
The purpose of the Anticoagulation Clinic is to provide close management of our patients on warfarin. Blood samples are taken by finger stick, which provides prompt results and, in turn, enables the patient to receive adjustments and counseling before leaving the office. For those unable to come to the office, this service is provided over the phone.
Since the inception of the Anticoagulation Clinic, we have realized an increased percentage of patients' protimes falling within normal range, and an increased level of compliance among patients. Our efforts earned us the Dream Award for excellence in anticoagulation management in 2003.
Services are offered by appointment only between 8:30 a.m. and 12:00-or between 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.-Monday through Friday.
The Lipid Clinic at HeartCare Midwest is under the direction of Dr. Donald McElroy. It is staffed full time by a Clinical Nurse Specialist, two LPNs, and one Registered Dietitian.
The primary goal of the Lipid Clinic is to reduce a patient's risk for cardiovascular disease. This goal is accomplished through a combination of lifestyle adjustments and pharmacological interventions. Individual patient goals are established using national standards and guidelines. The Lipid Clinic also participates in clinical research for the development of new tools that can be used to reduce risk.
As of spring 2005, we have a population of just under 1,100 patients enrolled in the Lipid Clinic. Approximately 75 percent of these patients have achieved their LDL goals. Most of the patients in the clinic start with substantially elevated cholesterol levels and require intense lifestyle counseling, and many patients require multiple medications.
Arrhythmia Device Clinic
All HeartCare Midwest patients who receive pacemakers or arrhythmia devices are seen by our device physicians and nurses in our office. Patients come in according to established guidelines for follow up, alternating between Device Clinic RNs and physician office visits.
In addition to the electrophysiologists and cardiologists who implant devices, we have registered nurses on our Device Clinic team. These nurses troubleshoot devices, assess the patient's condition and educate patients regarding their devices.
Remote Transmission Via Carelink
As of 2004, Medtronic ICD patients can transmit device readings from any location through a system called Carelink. In the event of a shock, Carelink also provides doctors a means to determine what occurred in the patient's heart to trigger the shock. Patients are instructed to call their physicians immediately after the shock and then send a transmission via Carelink, as instructed.
Specialty Device Services
HCM has technicians who are specially trained to manage transtelephonic monitoring of pacemakers, holter monitor scanning, and event monitors. Transtelephonic monitoring takes place every four to eight weeks and allows the technician to evaluate the pacemaker function via telephone.