Quality of Living

Posted On January 9, 2021

Innovative care for Heart Failure gives patients more time at home and peace of mind

Prisma Health continues to provide innovative care for Heart Failure patients and is proud to lead the country in implementation of the CardioMEMS™ HF System, a wireless device that allows heart failure patients to monitor their pulmonary artery pressure from the comfort of their home. Since its initial launch at Prisma Health five years ago, 426 devices have been implanted in patients, helping doctors observe and proactively treat symptoms of worsening heart failure remotely. This is the most implantations of any healthcare system across the country, with outstanding care resulting in improved quality of life, substantial reduction in Heart Failure hospitalizations and emergency department visits.

The sensor is implanted with a short outpatient procedure of approximately 30 minutes. The sensor sends important information to the team of Heart Failure specialists at Prisma Health to help guide patient care. In addition to reduction in Heart Failure hospitalizations and ER visits, patients have significantly improved quality of life with the knowledge their Heart Failure is being actively managed.

Prisma patient, Stephen Lewis, had the sensor implanted in 2018 and reported that it has given him great peace of mind. Lewis, 80 years old, had his first heart attack at the age of 39. It was followed by two more and a quadruple bypass in 2000. The sensor sends a reading to his doctors each morning. “The doctors can measure the amount of fluid that’s collected in my lungs or heart. When they get the reading, they can immediately see if something is off and then give us a call,” he said. “If anybody needs this, they should not hesitate. It takes away a lot of your worry.” Lewis was back to his normal routine just a few days after the minimally invasive procedure and currently enjoys a relatively active lifestyle, though he is taking extreme precautions to avoid exposure to Covid-19.

“Use of this implant and technology has allowed our patients to spend more time at home while also receiving constant monitoring and treatment from our team of providers. This consistency of care is always a benefit to our patients, and during the pandemic, this has been even more helpful to our patients who are trying to reduce their risks,” said Dr. Barry Feldman, Chair of the Heart and Vascular service line at Prisma Health.

Patients are eligible if they continue to experience Heart Failure symptoms despite adequate medical management. Physicians determine treatment based on considerations such as weight, telecommunication capability, access to care, social support, comorbidities and others.

This is one tool utilized in the comprehensive evaluation by the only Joint Commission Accredited Advanced Heart Failure Certified Center in the state that allows patients more time to be home, with their families. This designation signifies the dedication of the Prisma Health Heart Failure teams to follow patients across the care continuum while in the hospital, at home or even while traveling. Telehealth, remote monitoring, and many other technologies are all evaluated by the cardiology team as potential options for a thorough Heart Failure plan.  

Prisma Health Heart Hospital

6 Richland Medical Park Dr.

Columbia, SC 29203