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Published on April 24, 2012

New 'Hybrid' Surgical Suite At University Hospital Offers More Options

COLUMBIA, Mo. ― A new “hybrid” operating room at University Hospital will allow vascular surgeons, cardiothoracic surgeons and other multidisciplinary surgical teams to perform different procedures simultaneously, resulting in faster, life-saving interventions for patients.

“The newly completed hybrid operating room at University Hospital combines high-quality X-ray imaging equipment normally found only in an interventional cardiology catheterization lab with the equipment and space usually available only operating rooms,” said Todd Vogel, M.D., chief of vascular surgery at University Hospital.

One advantage of the new hybrid O.R. is the use of the latest in fluoroscopy technology. Fluoroscopy uses an X-ray source to produce real-time imaging, which makes inner-artery procedures such as angioplasty or stenting possible.

“In a traditional open procedure for the repair of an aortic aneurysm, there is no fluoroscopy involved,” said Vogel. “An incision would be made from the chest bone down the abdomen for access to the aneurysm. With the hybrid operating room, we are able to make micro-punctures in the groin and use a catheter threaded through the arteries to place a repair device into aneurysm to line it and close it off. The key to this approach is the use of a high-quality fluoroscopy imaging system.”

The hybrid O.R’s size and technology will also allow multidisciplinary teams of surgeons to work simultaneously.

“In the past cardiothoracic, vascular and interventional cardiology were separate services,” said Ajit Tharakan, M.D., chief of cardiothoracic surgery at University Hospital. “The hybrid O.R. brings the expertise of all three groups together, all in a single room. I see this as a huge benefit by having a combined cardiovascular approach where we can all work together and collaborate for the best outcomes for our patients.”

For trauma patients with severe injuries who can deteriorate rapidly, the hybrid O.R. offers surgeons the ability to convert from a minimally invasive procedure to an open procedure immediately.

“In addition to trauma-related surgeries, certain coronary artery and heart valve diseases both require an open operation and also an inner-artery intervention,” said Tharakan. “Before we had this suite, we would need to schedule two different procedures. Now, we can do both at the same time in the same room. This means a quicker recovery for the patient, a reduction of surgery-related resources and the ability to do collaborative work.”

As a vascular surgeon, Vogel envisions his team performing more advanced minimally invasive aortic work and peripheral artery procedures for treating the blockages in leg arteries that cause pain and cramping.

“This new facility offers our patients the benefits of the latest technology,” said Vogel.

“There are complex cardiovascular problems that can be best served in the hybrid O.R.,” said Tharakan. “We are pleased that we are able to offer these services to our patients.”

To watch a video or view photographs featuring University Hospital’s new hybrid O.R., please