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Officials cut ribbon on hybrid operating room

March 25, 2013 by Beth Anne Atkins

Officials cut ribbon on hybrid operating room


GREENVILLE, NC – Officials from Vidant Medical Center and the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University cut the ribbon today on a new hybrid operating room. A hybrid OR is an operating room equipped with a sophisticated imaging system that allows physicians to perform minimally invasive cardiac and vascular procedures with greater precision than ever before.


Using a piece of equipment commonly referred to as a C-arm, physicians can take pictures all the way around a person’s body. This three-dimensional view allows the entire care team to work with extreme accuracy when performing cardiac and vascular procedures.


Participating in the event were: Dr. Randolph Chitwood, director, East Carolina Heart Institute, East Carolina University and Vidant Medical Center and professor of cardiovascular surgery, Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University; Dr. Michael Stoner, associate professor in the department of cardiovascular sciences at the Brody School of Medicine; and Steve Lawler, president, Vidant Medical Center. 

"The East Carolina Heart Institute is known for its leading-edge technology, high-quality care, research and education. The addition of the hybrid operating room supports the mission of the Heart Institute to improve cardiovascular health in eastern North Carolina,” said Chitwood. “With access to this level of a facility, patients will experience reduced recovery times and ultimately better outcomes."


At 1,200 square feet, the hybrid OR at the East Carolina Heart Institute at Vidant Medical Center is far larger than a standard operating room and among the largest such rooms to be found in the nation. But more important than its size, the design of this new OR incorporates the best aspects and ideas found in existing older and smaller rooms.


A common cardiac procedure performed in the hybrid OR is for the treatment of a condition known as Aortic Stenosis or AS. With AS, a heart valve is narrowed, which impairs the ability of the heart to pump blood. The corrective procedure, known as trans-catheter aortic valve replacement or TAVR, involves insertion of a new valve under X-ray guidance with minimal to no incision and without the use of a heart-lung machine. A common vascular procedure is the repair of an enlarged blood vessel or aneurysm in the chest or abdomen with the insertion of a device known as a stent-graft. Once again, this is commonly done with little to no incision required because of the imaging capabilities available in the hybrid OR.


“The design of the room was driven by the vision and experience of the physicians and nurses who provide care in the hybrid OR every day,” said Lawler. “With this new space, our medical professionals have helped create a room that allows them to provide the highest degree of flexibility for standard vascular and cardiac procedures, as well as those that require sophisticated technology for both minimally invasive and open procedures.”


The East Carolina Heart Institute brings together many different levels of specialties under one roof. These skilled professionals work together toward the common goal of improving cardiovascular health in eastern North Carolina. The concept of the hybrid OR truly supports that mission as cardiologists and surgeons work together using this leading-edge technology to deliver the best possible care. 

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