The future is now — WellStar North Fulton Hospital is the first hospital in Metro Atlanta to offer robotic-assisted coronary interventions.

The Roswell hospital last week opened its new cardiac catheterization lab, allowing doctors to perform minimally invasive tests and procedures to diagnose and treat cardiovascular disease.

The lab makes it possible to treat patients locally, without leaving the north Fulton area.

The facility includes two cath labs, private waiting rooms for families and state-of-the-art technology. In addition to the new cardiac catheterization lab, a renovated rehabilitation facility will assist patients in their recovery.

“When a heart attack occurs there’s a small window to clear those blockages,” Jeffery Penton, director of cardiovascular services at WellStar North Fulton Hospital, said in a statement. “We have the team and the technology to get this done as quickly as possible without having to transfer the patient to another facility.”

The cath lab also allows physicians to perform electrophysiology procedures to treat abnormal heartbeats, as well as a procedure known as cardiac swing, which reduces exposure to radiation from x-ray equipment by limiting the number of images taken during a diagnostic catheterization.

Additionally, WellStar North Fulton Hospital offers robotic-assisted percutaneous coronary interventions, making it one of 50 sites worldwide to utilize the technology.

Traditionally, a percutaneous coronary intervention, or PCI, is performed as a minimally-invasive treatment for severe coronary artery disease.

“In this procedure, also known as angioplasty, a balloon is used to physically open an artery blockage and help improve blood flow. The new equipment used to perform the procedure, Corindus Vascular Robotics CorPath GRX system, is the first and only FDA-approved medical device to bring robotic-assisted precision to coronary interventions. It improves traditional PCI by increasing precision of stent and balloon placement, while reducing radiation exposure,” a news release said.

“Healthcare is changing rapidly, and WellStar is leading the way,” said Jon-Paul Croom, president of WellStar North Fulton Hospital. “Our new cath lab is one way we are continually advancing our mission and aiming to reach new heights in the delivery of efficient, cost-effective, high-quality healthcare.”

To schedule an appointment with a WellStar Medical Group cardiologist in your area, call 770-956-STAR (7827).

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