Inova Heart and Vascular Institute to Reunite Heart Recovery Patients with their Medical Caregivers

Falls Church, VA – Inova Heart and Vascular Institute (IHVI) is hosting a Heart Recovery Reunion on December 13, to honor and reunite patients who have survived advanced heart failure or a heart attack complicated by cardiogenic shock. This event will celebrate those who have recovered following use of innovative treatments available at IHVI and will take place at Inova Fairfax Medical Campus, IHVI Atrium/Main Lobby, 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.

“Any heart attack is a serious and potentially life-threatening medical condition,” according to Christopher O’Connor, MD, Chief Executive Officer of IHVI. “Patients involved in this reunion represent the most complex cases – a circumstance that involves both cardiac and respiratory failure. When a patient’s condition reaches that point, there is a substantially higher risk of death. This celebration gives our physicians and care team members a moment to celebrate the success of the advanced treatments we use to recover and preserve a patient’s native heart and greatly improve the chance of survival with good long-term outcomes.”

IHVI offers patients a full spectrum of care for complex cardiac conditions, including a dedicated team of physicians who treat advanced heart failure. IHVI also initiated a Cardiogenic Shock Team in 2017, whose patient survival results have garnered national attention within the medical community. Compared to national survival rates of 50% for these high-risk cases, IHVI’s institutional survival approached 80% in 2018. Results of the team’s approach to organizing care for these patients have been published in two national medical journals and were featured in a poster presentation at the Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) Scientific Session in September.

The Cardiogenic Shock Team involves multiple medical specialists and focuses on rapid initiation of advanced techniques, including the use of temporary cardiac support such as Impella®, the world’s smallest heart pump. The Impella heart pump is designed to provide minimally-invasive, temporary support to assist the pumping function of the heart, allowing it to rest and potentially recover. The Impella heart pump is the only therapy approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) as safe and effective for heart recovery in patients with advanced heart failure requiring Protected PCI (percutaneous coronary intervention), or patients in cardiogenic shock due to a heart attack.

Other advanced care treatments managed by the Cardiogenic Shock team include Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) a modified form of cardiopulmonary bypass which provides temporary support of lungs, heart and other organs for patients not responding to conventional treatments and ventricular assist devices that provide circulatory support either as a bridge to heart transplant or as a permanent therapy in select cases.

“Having a team adept at these advanced therapies is critical to patient survival,” O’Connor said. “We are fortunate to have industry partnerships that allow IHVI to stay at the forefront of these technological innovations, which enables IHVI to provide more comprehensive options for our patients.”

Media Contact: Mona Johnston, 703-776-3022

About Inova Fairfax Medical Campus
Inova’s flagship location is Inova Fairfax Medical Campus, a 923-bed medical center serving Northern Virginia, the Washington DC metro area and beyond. Campus facilities include Inova Fairfax Hospital, Inova Heart and Vascular Institute, Inova Children’s Hospital and Inova Women’s Hospital. IFMC is also home to Northern Virginia’s only Level 1 Trauma Center and offers organ transplant programs for Heart, Lung, Kidney and Pancreas.

IFMC is an independent academic medical center and serves as a regional medical school campus hosting medical student rotations for VCU and has affiliations with the medical schools at UVA, Georgetown, and GWU. Our campus is host to a range of graduate medical education programs including both residency programs and fellowships. In addition to six independent Inova training programs, we also partner with Georgetown, GWU, The National Capital Consortium (military program), VCU, Howard and NIH to provide training in a total of 19 specialty training areas. We also partner with the nursing schools of George Mason, George Washington, Marymount, Shenandoah, Georgetown, Catholic and Stratford universities as well as Northern Virginia Community College; and the pharmacy schools of Butler, Howard, Notre Dame, Shenandoah, University of Pittsburg, University of Maryland, and the VCU School of Pharmacy.

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The Impella 2.5®, Impella CP®, Impella CP® with SmartAssist, Impella 5.0® and Impella LD® are FDA-approved heart pumps used to treat heart attack or cardiomyopathy patients in cardiogenic shock, and have the unique ability to enable native heart recovery, allowing patients to return home with their own heart. The Impella 2.5 and Impella CP devices are also approved to treat certain advanced heart failure patients undergoing elective and urgent percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) such as stenting or balloon angioplasty, to re-open blocked coronary arteries. Abiomed’s right-side heart pump, the Impella RP® device, is FDA approved to treat patients experiencing acute right heart failure or decompensation following left ventricular assist device implantation, myocardial infarction, heart transplant, or open-heart surgery. IHVI medical providers are trained on the Impella Advanced Hemodynamic Simulator, which was donated by Abiomed to IHVI in January 2018. The simulator will be on display during the December 13 Heart Recovery Reunion. To learn more about the Impella platform of heart pumps, including their approved indications and important safety and risk information associated with the use of the devices, please visit:


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