Mountainside Medical Center expands cardiology services

The New Jersey Department of Health has licensed Hackensack Meridian Mountainside Medical Center to provide elective angioplasty, a scheduled procedure in which cardiologists use stents to open clogged coronary arteries in patients diagnosed with coronary artery disease. This minimally invasive treatment restores blood supply to the heart and helps to prevent heart attack, heart failure and other forms of heart disease.

For many years, Mountainside has provided emergency angioplasty for patients experiencing a heart attack, as well as cardiac catheterization and imaging procedures to diagnose heart disease. This additional licensure allows cardiologists to perform diagnostic testing and, if needed, necessary treatment during one visit. Dr. Ankitkumar Patel, cardiologist and medical director of invasive cardiology at Mountainside, performed the hospital’s first elective case recently. The patient is now home and recuperating well.

Clinical studies conducted at hospitals across the nation, like the Atlantic Cardiovascular Patient Outcomes Research Team Trial-Elective Angioplasty Study that began in 2008, have shown the safety and efficacy of providing elective angioplasty in hospitals capable of performing the procedure during an emergency.

“Residents of Montclair and the surrounding communities have reason to celebrate, as they can now schedule life-changing elective angioplasty procedures close to home,” said Dr. Ihor Sawczuk, president, Northern Region, and chief research officer, Hackensack Meridian Health. “And, with additional hospitals across our network also becoming licensed, any delay in care that previously could occur due to limited patient capacity will be greatly reduced.”

“I am proud of Mountainside’s achievements,” Mountainside CEO Tim O’Brien said. “With this licensure and plans to expand the hospital’s Interventional Catheterization Suite, we are elated to begin the next phase in providing comprehensive cardiac care at Mountainside.”

Cardiovascular diseases are the No. 1 cause of disability and death for men and women. Mountainside’s interdisciplinary team of specialists collaborate to provide a comprehensive program for identifying, treating and managing heart and vascular conditions for adult patients.

“Though elective angioplasty is new to Mountainside, rest assured that the medical center’s team is experienced in providing angioplasty to save and improve the quality of lives of patients,” Patel said.

Hospitals providing angioplasty have arrangements in place with facilities that provide open-heart surgery in case of emergency. Mountainside’s backup facility is Hackensack University Medical Center.

In May 2021, the NJDOH enabled the state’s hospitals to begin an application process, including extensive data collection and a site survey, to receive licensure to become a full-service catheterization lab for diagnostic testing, or add an elective angioplasty service to a preexisting emergency angioplasty services. Eight Hackensack Meridian Health medical centers in Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, and Ocean counties have applied for expanded services.

To learn more about the medical center’s cardiac services and to schedule a CT Calcium Scoring Scan, which provides early detection of heart attack risk,  click here.