March 07, 2007 07:15 ET

REMINDER: ORLive Presents: Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy for Heart Failure, a Bi-Ventricular Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator Implant

Live Webcast: From Tufts-New England Medical Center: March 7, 2007 at 6:00 PM EST (23:00 UTC)

BOSTON, MA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 7, 2007 -- Tufts-New England Medical Center will conduct a live Webcast of a bi-ventricular defibrillator implant on Wednesday, March 7, at 6 PM EST on

The surgical procedure will be performed by cardiac electrophysiologist Jonathan Weinstock, MD, and moderated by N.A. Mark Estes, MD, Director of the New England Cardiac Arrhythmia Center at Tufts-NEMC and Director of the Medical Center's Cardiac Electrophysiology and Pacemaker Laboratory. The Webcast will feature live Internet transmission of the procedure, as well as interviews with Marvin Konstam, MD, Chief of Tufts-NEMC's Division of Cardiology. Drs. Konstam and Estes will also discuss the integrated services of Tufts-NEMC's Cardiology Division and the benefits of comprehensive and multidisciplinary treatment for heart failure.

The implantation of a biventricular defibrillator is performed to implement Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy (CRT), or restored synchronized contraction of the left ventricle, as treatment for heart failure. The left ventricle must contract in a synchronized pattern to pump blood optimally from the heart and deliver oxygen to the rest of the body. When left ventricular activation is abnormal or "out of sync," the heart's function declines and patients experience heart failure symptoms such as shortness of breath, cough, ankle edema, weight gain, and fatigue.

With resynchronization therapy, improved left ventricular function provides better blood flow from the heart to the rest of the body, which results in improved breathing, strength, physical endurance, and quality of life.

Resynchronization therapy is one of many complex and innovative therapeutic approaches used within the Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplant Center at Tufts-NEMC, one of the leading programs in the country for evaluation and management of patients with heart failure, directed by David DeNofrio, MD. Other advanced procedures employed by the Center include cardiac transplantation, implant of ventricular assist devices, and complex monitoring techniques. The Center is active in investigating numerous novel device and pharmaceutical approaches to managing patients with heart failure.

A special kind of implantable cardiac device called a bi-ventricular defibrillator will be implanted during the Webcast to restore synchrony to the left ventricle and improve a heart failure patient's symptoms. Leads will be inserted through the veins to the heart's right atrium, right ventricle and coronary sinus (a vein that drains the left ventricle). The defibrillator will be implanted in a pocket over the pectoralis muscle. In addition to monitoring and pacing the heart on an ongoing basis, the bi-ventricular defibrillator can deliver therapy to correct potentially life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias if needed. Testing of the defibrillator will be performed to ensure proper function and programming. This will be accomplished by inducing ventricular fibrillation and allowing the device to detect and correct the arrhythmia.

Marvin Konstam, MD, is Chief of the Division of Cardiology at Tufts-New England Medical Center and a Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine. Dr. Konstam is widely renowned for his expertise in heart failure and cardiac transplant. The Cardiology Program at Tufts-NEMC is well known for its comprehensive care and leading-edge research program. It features physicians and nursing staff who are considered among the nation's leaders in bringing the latest advances in cardiovascular diagnoses and care into clinical practice.

Mark Estes, MD, is Director of Tufts-NEMC's New England Cardiac Arrhythmia Center, Director of the Cardiac Electrophysiology and Pacemaker Laboratory, and a Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine. He is a national leader in the areas of cardiac arrhythmias, pacemakers, implantable cardioverter defibrillation and ablation techniques. The Arrhythmia Center's clinicians are widely respected for their outstanding care and innovative approaches to the diagnosis and management of complex cardiac arrhythmias.

Jonathan Weinstock, MD, is a cardiac electrophysiologist and staff physician in Tufts-NEMC's New England Cardiac Arrhythmia Center and Division of Cardiology. He is also an Assistant Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, with expertise in electrophysiology and arrhythmias.

About Tufts-New England Medical Center and the Floating Hospital for Children

Tufts-New England Medical Center is a world-class academic medical institution that is home to both a full-service hospital for adults and the Floating Hospital for Children. It has long been recognized as a leader in cancer care, cardiology, organ transplantation, neurosciences and pediatrics. Founded in 1796 as the Boston Dispensary to care for sick and needy Bostonians, Tufts-NEMC is the oldest health care facility in New England. The Medical Center is the principal teaching hospital for Tufts University School of Medicine. The Floating Hospital for Children, Tufts-NEMC's full-service children's hospital, began as a hospital ship more than a century ago. The 128-bed Floating Hospital provides comprehensive inpatient and outpatient services in every area of medical specialization.

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