Results for 'cardiology'

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  • Structural Heart Program

    The Renown Health Structural Heart Program was the first integrated program of its kind in northern Nevada. Since the beginning, we've been dedicated to providing specialized care to patients with complex and progressive structural heart and valve disease. Our team of experts offer comprehensive diagnostics, advanced treatment options, leading-edge technologies and top-level expertise.

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  • Heart Surgery

    Cardiothoracic Surgery Led by a team of three distinguished cardiac surgeons with over 40 years of combined experience, Renown Health's Cardiothoracic Surgery program is the top-ranked cardiothoracic surgery program in Nevada.

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    • Friday, Feb 01, 2019

    Nationally Recognized Heart Surgeons Join Renown Health

    Two Open-Heart Surgeons and Two Advanced Practitioners Bring Nearly 70 Years of Local Experience. As part of a continuing focus on offering comprehensive care for patients experiencing cardiac and vascular disease across northern Nevada, Renown Health Department of Surgery and Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health have developed Renown’s first division of cardiothoracic surgery dedicated to heart surgery patients. “Today, I am proud to announce cardiothoracic surgeons, Athan Roumanas, M.D., FACS, and Joseph Brandl, M.D., FACS, who have more than 45 years of combined experience caring for northern Nevadans in need of open-heart surgery, will lead this new practice at Renown,” said Anthony Slonim, M.D., Dr.PH., FACHE, President and CEO of Renown Health. “Advanced practitioners Cindy Powers and Ashley White bring another 23 years of expert care to our community and the new division of cardiothoracic surgery.” Dr. Roumanas has 18 years of experience in northern Nevada. He is a clinical associate professor of surgery at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) and currently serves as medical director of cardiothoracic surgery for Renown Regional Medical Center. Since 1991, Dr. Brandl has cared for our region and held numerous positions throughout the community including Renown’s director of cardiac surgery and community adjunct faculty for UNR Med. Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health offers the most highly-skilled and experienced heart and vascular team and the most advanced heart center in the region. Renown has long been the region’s heart care leader – performing the area’s first open-heart surgery, angioplasty, stent and valve replacements decades ago. In 2015, Renown Regional became the first hospital in the region to offer transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), a lifesaving alternative to open-heart surgery for patients considered high-risk or inoperable. Renown is among the nation’s top-performing hospitals for heart attack treatment and one of only 105 hospitals nationwide to receive the American College of Cardiology ACTION Registry Silver Performance Achievement Award recognizing success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients. Additionally, Renown’s Roseview, Sierra and Cardiac Intensive Care Units (ICUs) were the only ICUs in Nevada to receive the Beacon Award of Excellence from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses. This distinction is based on sustained unit performance and patient outcomes that exceed national benchmarks. As Reno’s only locally-owned, charitable, not-for-profit integrated health network, Renown continues to meet customer demand for affordable healthcare and enhanced service and access by keeping the highest levels of clinical quality care right here in our community. Patients in need of advanced heart care can speak with their care provider about Renown Medical Group – Specialty Care, which can be reached at 775-982-6270 or visit

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    • Monday, Mar 16, 2020

    Update on Elective Surgical Procedures and Medical Services

    Today, in accordance with recommendations from the U.S. Surgeon General and the American College of Surgeons, the Renown Health Joint Medical Executive Committee decided that effective Tuesday, March 17, surgical cases scheduled at both Renown Regional Medical Center and Renown South Meadows Medical Center, considered to be ELECTIVE-OPTIONAL will be postponed to a later date.  Patients with scheduled ELECTIVE-OPTIONAL surgeries will be called by Renown Health representatives over the next week. Surgeon’s offices will also be reaching out to assist patients with rescheduling their surgeries for a future date.  Elective surgeries that are REQUIRED and not optional will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis daily with the surgeon, patient and a medical leadership review committee at Renown. Your surgeon’s office will be in contact with you with more information about these REQUIRED surgeries This temporary measure will allow Renown’s physicians and staff to enact the emergency preparedness plans they have been developing for weeks to create additional capacity for inpatients and to continue to deliver high quality care during the anticipated surge in COVID-19 cases in northern Nevada. The new guidelines do NOT apply to EMERGENCY surgeries performed in Renown hospitals. There are different types of surgery, this decision impacts Elective-Optional surgeries only. Elective – Optional surgery – Elective surgeries are not usually necessary for the individual to stay in good health. They are non-emergency and planned in advance. A wide range of surgeries can be elective. Most cosmetic surgeries are elective. Other surgeries such as organ donation, scoliosis surgery, tonsillectomies and other minor surgeries can also be considered elective. Required surgery – Surgery which needs to be done in order to retain quality of life. As opposed to urgent or emergency surgery, required surgeries do not need to be performed immediately. Examples of required surgery are kidney stone or tumor removal. Urgent or emergency surgery – When a patient’s condition is life threatening, surgery is considered emergent. Emergency surgeries must be performed immediately, even when the patient is unconscious and cannot give consent. Examples include trauma and appendicitis. Life-threatening conditions can occur during labor and delivery which may require emergency surgery. Other services making changes include: Pulmonary Services and Procedures Renown Health today will begin rescheduling patients scheduled for Pulmonary Function Testing, Outpatient bronchoscopy and patients at Thomas S. Dolan Pulmonary Rehabilitation. Patients who are affected by this change are being called by Renown to reschedule their appointments for Monday, April20, 2020 or later. Starbucks at Renown and Renown Dining Options As with many of the Starbucks around the U.S., the Starbucks at Renown Regional Medical Center will shift to a “to-go” model, with no seating available. The cafeterias at Renown Regional Medical Center and South Meadows Medical Center remain open, will temporarily eliminate self-service options and will add more ‘grab and go’ options. Other Renown Services Remain Open Renown Medical Group offices remain open. Planned imaging procedures such as ultrasound, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRIs), mammograms and non-invasive cardiology testing will continue at Renown hospitals and office locations and will NOT be postponed at this time. Patients confirmed for imaging appointments will be contacted prior to their scheduled visits to identify those who may be at higher risk of COVID-19 infection. Renown has expanded access to Teladoc virtual visits, available to all Hometown Health and Senior Care Plus subscribers. For up-to-date information on Renown’s approach to keeping our community safe, visit our website at     About Renown Health Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of the region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, a rehabilitation hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit

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    • Surgical Services
    • Employees
    • Surgery
    • Careers

    Department Spotlight: Surgical Preadmission

    Heading into surgery of any kind can bring along feelings of intimidation. With a best-in-class surgery team at Renown Health, patients rest assured that they are in the most capable hands for their entire procedure from start to finish – and while the physical preparation is vital, mental and emotional preparation is equally as important to ensure each patient has a smooth and comfortable experience. The Surgical Preadmission department (a.k.a. “preadmit”) at Renown Regional Medical Center and Renown South Meadows Medical Center is a dynamic and compassionate group of nurses, case managers, chart managers and more who are dedicated to guiding each patient through the surgical process. With extensive knowledge and expertise under their belt, the teams are equipped to make a genuine difference in the health and well-being of all patients, for all surgeries, at all times of the year. Surgery Starting Ground The Surgical Preadmission teams are crucial aspects in the successful outcome of every surgical procedure. Comprised of skilled healthcare professionals, this department is dedicated to providing comprehensive support and care before heading into the pre-operating room. “Our job is to prepare every patient for surgery, make sure all their pre-surgery testing is done, ensure they understand their fasting and medication instructions, have had their questions answered, have a ride home and know what to expect during surgery and after so their recovery can go smoothly and without complications,” said Debra Bennett, RN, Supervisor of Surgical Preadmission at Renown Regional. “Each patient is unique, so each experience is different.” Our preadmit nurses are the masters of communication, directing thorough assessments – including medications, tests and clearances – and addressing any questions or concerns patients may have, never missing the opportunity to inform them of exactly what they will expect in surgery. “I do a complete history on every patient while giving them detailed pre-operating instructions and helping them answer any questions to the best of my ability,” said Nancy Hilts, Surgical Preadmission RN at Renown Regional. “I am proud to be able to help allay their fears and concerns using my 30 years of pre-op experience. I offer an avenue for them to feel comfortable opening up to me.” “We always tell patients that they have great surgeons and a fantastic team that will be watching over them and taking care of them every step of the way,” added Jon Capallupo, Surgical Preadmission RN at Renown South Meadows. “We also give them plenty of educational handouts and video content, in addition to verbal instruction, to ensure they are as prepared as possible.” The nurses then pass the reigns onto the chart managers, who prepare the charts for surgery and ensure all documentation is up-to-date before sending them to the pre-operative team. The expert surgical case managers also step in to prepare a thorough discharge plan, along with reviewing pre-operation orders for status, consent, codes and more. The team does several of these initial visits virtually, and they are looking forward to soon phasing all preadmit case manager preliminary visits into a virtual model. From assisting the pre-op and post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) teams with discharge planning concerns to helping on the outpatient side with anything from oxygen equipment and catheters to transportation issues and those experiencing homelessness, our pre-admit case managers are always up to the challenge. "We are true patient advocates, alleviating concerns and fears along the way,” said Mary Carl, RN, Case Manager at Renown Regional. “Just to name a few things we do on a daily basis, we see our total joint and non-weight bearing patients during their preadmission appointment, so they are aware of the medical equipment they need and if it is covered by insurance; provide education for Aspira catheters and gastrostomy tubes; advocate to ensure tube feeding and dressing changes are set up for hospice and home health patients; and escalate concerns of patient safety to ensure a safe discharge.” In the midst of it all, there is never a dull moment in the preadmit teams. At Renown Regional alone, the preadmit professionals see more than 1,600 patients a month – and each one has a hyper-personalized experience with their very own preadmit team. “Many times, we are the first impression a patient has on our organization; after all, we touch more than 97 percent of patients that are scheduled for surgery, cardiac catheterization lab procedures or interventional radiology,” said Amy Schler, Surgical Preadmission RN at Renown Regional. “We also collaborate with many other departments in the hospital as well, from surgeons and anesthesiologists to case managers and nurse navigators. Our work in preadmit impacts the entire surgical process.” Holding a diverse array of experiences, our preadmit department plays an integral role in our commitment to providing the highest quality of care to every patient. Knowledge is Power Heading into surgery feeling fearful and worried is normal for any patient. However, how would you feel knowing that each individual member on your preadmit team has, on average, 23-25 years of experience in the field? This is the reality for our Surgical Preadmission department – and they put that vast knowledge to great use to bring a sense of calm to patients. “Our team members have worked in various departments within our organization, and they bring a wealth of knowledge that we share with each other, and most importantly, with our patients,” said Amy Schler, RN. “If you have hundreds of years of nursing experience, you can speak not only as a nurse but also as a patient. It allows you to give a more personal perspective on what patients can expect in their recovery. Being able to assess their emotions and provide feedback to our pre-op and PACU teams help the patient have a better experience.” “Many of our nurses have close to 40 years of experience each, and they have an extremely large knowledge base since we see patients from newborn to geriatric and from easy procedures to complex surgeries,” added Debra Bennett, RN. “Another great aspect of our team is the varied nursing backgrounds we all hold – surgery, pre- and post-op, labor and delivery, pediatric intensive care, cardiology, gastroenterology, urology, cardiac cath lab, home health and everything in between. Communication between departments is so important!” All members in this department, regardless of which clinical area they came from, surgical or non-surgical, can easily translate their skills into the work they do in preadmit – and they only continue to grow. “As a surgical preadmission nurse, I have used my years of experience as a nurse in surgical services,” said Terri Delatorre, Surgical Preadmission RN at Renown Regional. “I started as a floor nurse with orthopedics for 12 years, and then I worked with the PACU for 11 years. This has helped me give great understanding and care to our surgical patients.” “Because we have staff with such a vast knowledge base, we can rely on our years of working within our organization to help alleviate fears that the patient may have,” added Amy Schler, RN. We can prepare them for what to expect in pre-op and PACU and educate them on what to expect post-op, including any barriers they may face. For example, mastectomy patients may not realize they will not be able to raise their arms for 7-10 days post-op, and total knee patients have to navigate stairs and housing access. Helping patients think about barriers at home that they may not have thought about helps them prepare prior to surgery, enhances their healing and provides a better surgical experience.” The preadmit team works closely with our best-in-class surgeons and anesthesiologists, continuing to grow their expertise along the way while learning alongside our talented providers. For instance, when it comes to our Renown South Meadows preadmit department, anesthesiologist Nariman Rahimzadeh, MD provides excellent guidance for the entire team on state-of-the-art anesthesiology practices. “I am very proud of the work we do with Dr. Rahimzadeh,” said Lisa Closson, Surgical Preadmission RN at Renown South Meadows. “Together, we ensure patients are safe for both surgery and anesthesia.” Despite the challenges that come their way – whether it be changes to process and workflow to navigating support for patients after they leave the surgery floor – the preadmit team cleverly uses their collective wealth of knowledge to bring hope and comfort to all patients. “Our nurses are such warm, caring and compassionate humans that do their best to ease any fears and anxieties patients may have,” said Debra Bennett, RN. The Pride of Preadmission The pride of our preadmit team lies in their ability to make a positive impact on all patients they serve. To them, their work is not just a job – it's a calling. And they do it all while working together to elevate their team and performance. “Our team is most proud of the quality of care we provide to our patients and our abilities to troubleshoot difficult situations to ensure they have a great surgical experience here at Renown,” said Mary Carl, RN. The entire department supports each other by working collaboratively and relying on each other’s expertise to provide the best possible care for patients. They understand that their success as a team depends on their abilities to support and help each other. “Our team is awesome here at South Meadows,” said Jon Capallupo, RN. “We can turn to each other for support, and we all work very well with each other. I am glad to be a part of this team.” “I am proud of how well all of us in preadmit works with each other every day,” added Lisa Closson, RN. “We try to make patients feel comfortable from the moment they arrive to the time they leave the department.” The pride that our preadmit team expends goes beyond their departmental limits – these team members are also trusted teachers. They work closely with cancer nurse navigators to teach weekly classes for patients who have been newly diagnosed with breast cancer, coupled with lymphedema prevention and education classes. The team also encourages participation in Renown’s free smoking cessation programs to help their patients learn the risks and benefits of quitting smoking. When not serving patients or teaching classes, you can find many of these team members taking charge of multidisciplinary committees within our health system, including breast leadership, gastroenterology leadership, shared governance, infection control and recruitment and retention. On top of it all, this team certainly knows how to celebrate, with several of their members being a part of their own department-wide Celebration Committee, where they gather for retirement parties, baby showers and team get-togethers. Always active and never passing up a challenge, our preadmit department are shining examples of Renown’s Culture Commitments, especially Caring and Collaboration, and the pride in the vital work they do every day is limitless. “I am so happy my position in preadmit opened up for me at a time when I was really feeling challenged in my career,” said Nancy Hilts, RN. “The team that we have here is amazing. I am so grateful and thankful every day for the opportunity. It is an amazing place to work!”

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    • Employees
    • Surgery
    • Medical Record

    Department Spotlight: Surgery & Procedure Scheduling

    When it comes to intimidating procedures such as surgery, cardiac catheterization (Cath) or interventional radiology (IR), there can be a lot of unknowns. What can I expect on the big day? What will happen after I’m all done? Will I have to worry about my orders not being in the system? Who can I call if I have any last-minute questions? It’s easy for your thoughts to race as you approach your procedure date, but luckily, there is a team who puts your mind at ease.  With Renown Health’s Surgery & Procedure Scheduling department, patients can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that all the nitty-gritty is taken care of before they step foot in the procedure room. This team operates in the mindset of a complex Tetris board – fitting in all the pieces to make sure every patient is set on the path for surgery success.  Consistent Contact Our Surgery & Procedure Scheduling team has a unique history. Initially operating as two separate teams, over the last year, our leaders skillfully combined the two teams together under one umbrella. That allows the now singular team to have line of sight across every surgery and Cath or IR procedure plan and be better stewards of the resources they have at their fingertips to provide streamlined, more-connected care for patients.  As one might imagine, with the merger of the two teams, the day-in-the-life of each team member is full of a variety of crucial checklist items to cross off – all supporting constant communication from patients to providers.  On the surgery scheduling front, these team members are resource rockstars. From working with referring providers to get patients scheduled appropriately to ensuring rooms and equipment are available for every patient, this team makes sure everything and everyone is in place when the time comes to help create a successful procedure and the best possible patient experience.   “In surgery scheduling, we handle inbound calls for the outside offices to get time scheduled for each patient in the operating room (OR),” said Lydia Sharkey, Senior Scheduler. “We make sure there are plenty of anesthesia resources and equipment for every surgery, including any important information that we need to schedule patients appropriately and adding all documents to the OR board. If we need to swap rooms or move patients around, we handle that process too.”  Over on the IR/Cath scheduling side of things, this team is on the frontlines of patient communication. They are experts in helping patients navigate their procedure from start (seeing their provider and obtaining the proper referrals) to finish (the day of the procedure and post-procedure process).  “My day is a little different than the hospital schedulers; our part of the team handles the outpatient aspect,” said Adrienne White, Senior Scheduler. “We are in constant contact with patients and the IR and Cath departments. We help them navigate their procedure, including what to expect during and after the procedure. We get them through the process as easily as possible and ease their minds, so they know what is going to happen every step of the way. It’s all about communication, communication, communication!”  This department has a significant overarching role: make sure all documents and ancillary information is set up for all our clinical teams that help with surgeries and procedures. This critical work means that every process is followed, and no important details are left out.  “No one wakes up and says, ‘I want to have surgery;” our team goes above and beyond to make sure every single detail is taken care of so that when patients arrive, everything is in place,” said Trisha White. “Our team works hard to ensure everything runs as efficiently as possible because we want to use our resources in the best way possible to serve our patients without delays. We make sure we receive all the orders, codes and insurance and that the teams that follow after us – including our pre-admit team and nurses – have all the information they need to do their job seamlessly."  With all the work they accomplish daily – not to mention how they wholeheartedly support each other through it all – it’s no question that the entire team has a lot to be proud of. Besides helping make patient care possible, the team puts their departmental merger and the move to fully remote work at the top of the list.  “We’re most proud of merging the surgery scheduling and procedure scheduling teams together and therefore more cohesive,” said Mary Gray, Senior Scheduler. “The merger has made our team blossom and be able to connect with and rely on one another even more. We aren’t afraid to speak up and say something. At the end of the day, we’re here to take care of the patient, but we also help each other out. Our morale has gone up, and everybody is happier. Even though we all work remotely, we are more connected and have a great work-life balance.”  “Along with transitioning the two teams into one big team, the move to being fully remote was huge," added Patricia Cruz-Hernandez, Surgical RN Scheduling Coordinator. “We worked through all the glitches, and it was a seamless transition to move into a remote setting. What’s great is that it did not affect patients at all; everything still gets done exactly as it should.”  No matter how busy the days may get, Renown’s surgery and procedure schedulers always remember one thing: they are incredibly grateful for their fellow team members.  “We have a very efficient and hard-working team of women,” said Pam Chapa Valencia, Senior Scheduler.  “I could not have handpicked better people for our team,” added Trisha White. “I feel so lucky to have the team that we have.”  A Renown “Why” Our Surgery and Procedure Scheduling team members all have diverse stories to tell about their road to Renown and why they’ve stayed in the department for as long as they have. Whether they’ve been with us for two years or two decades, they all share the same strong calling to care for their community.  “I always wanted to help people, and my grandma was a nurse,” said Pam Chapa Valencia, Senior Scheduler.  “I loved hearing her stories, and it made me want to be involved in patient care.”  “I have a caring nature, and a hospital nature seemed like the right fit – I've been here for 25 years,” added Mary Gray.  Several of our schedulers recognized the influence Renown has within our community and the ability to grow professionally and personally, both of which were a driving factor in their decision to make our health system their long-term career.  “I’m originally from southern California, and I moved here about eight years ago; my husband always talked so positively about Renown, especially with how big it is and how it has the only level II trauma center in northern Nevada, so my goal was always to get a job here,” said Lydia Sharkey. “It’s been a great environment to be a part of.”  “I’ve been with Renown for 17 years, and I chose to come here because of the reputation of the services Renown provided and care they gave,” added Trisha White. “I also knew what opportunities there were for me professionally, and in doing so, we are taking care of our community. I’ve had the chance to grow within my own professional skills and leadership skillset.”  A profound feeling of ‘home’ is a common theme among this department. These team members appreciate the sense of community Renown has, the strides we’ve made in expanding our reach and how our health system gives healthcare professionals who are new to the field a chance to succeed.  “At the time, Renown was the only hospital that would train nurses, and as a brand-new nurse, I had no experience – Renown took a chance on me,” said Patricia Cruz-Hernandez. “I feel like this is home. Our health system is so community-based and people-first minded, keeping ‘mission over margin.’ We’re growing, we’re expanding, we’re everywhere!”  “I was a part of a transition as the cardiology private practice I worked with became a Renown practice, and it was great,” added Adrienne White. “This transition enabled us to provide more services and better care to patients. I stay here because I see the leaps and bounds we’ve been able to make in terms of procedures, accessibility and patient experience.”  As true advocates for both patients and each other, the team is proud to have found their niche – and the ultimate beneficiaries? Everyone undergoing a surgery or procedure at Renown.  A Culture of Kindness and Gratitude When you meet the Surgery & Procedure Scheduling team, you are greeted with warm smiles and an enthusiastic “Nice to meet you!” You can’t help but smile back and feel the infectious kindness they exude.  Renown operates with a People-First mindset, a vision that this department especially takes to heart. They emulate the exact definition of our “Collaboration” cultural commitment.  “We’ve built very good relationships and rapport with the OR managers and board runners,” said Lydia Sharkey. “The communication that we have at all three locations is very solid.”  “The OR leadership is always so willing to help out whenever they can, and the resources they’ve provided have been huge for us,” added Adrienne White.  “All the teams that see the patients after us – especially the surgical pre-admit team and the case managers, are fantastic about collaborating with us and reaching out to solve any issues they may have,” added Trisha White. “We all work so well together, especially since we all impact patient care.”  In any organization, strong and compassionate leadership is key to a thriving team. Luckily for our surgery and procedure schedulers, they have Trisha White on their side. They attribute a lot of their success to having a supportive leader who “gets it.”  “Trisha has been a scheduler like us, so she completely understands when we’re having an issue, because she’s struggled with the same thing and knows where we are coming from,” said Mary Gray. “It makes us feel like we are not alone – I can always reach out to her, or any of my other coworkers, to ask questions and figure out a solution together.”  Despite being a remote-only team that meets in-person only one or two times a month, this group never misses an opportunity to reconnect both online and offline. They frequently shout out their Culture Ambassadors, schedulers Pam Chapa Valencia and Roxanne Abundis, for their team’s high morale.  “Even though we all primarily work remotely, our in-person days are some of my favorite days of the month,” said Trisha White. “We feel so uplifted, we laugh and we have fun. We love being with each other. Pam and Roxanne are our Culture Ambassadors, and they both have been amazing at planning fun things for our teams. They go above and beyond to make our team feel cohesive and included.”  “Pam and Roxanne have been leaders in creating a fun environment and supportive culture for us,” added Lydia Sharkey. “Whether it’s creating care packages or making sure we all have a good time when we see each other in person, they deserve a lot of credit.”  As this team excels in their roles and foster a culture rooted in kindness and gratitude, we can trust that Renown’s surgeries and procedures will continue to thrive, and patients will continue to benefit from their diligent efforts and commitment to efficiency.  “We make the magic happen!” closes Mary Gray.

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    • Patient Story
    • Heart Care
    • Surgery

    Excellence in Heart Care Changes a Patient's Life

    Being diagnosed with a chronic heart condition like atrial fibrillation (A-fib) can shift the course of your entire life. Embracing heart medications and lifestyle changes become your norm, and thanks to advancements in medicine and medical technology, managing the condition can bring you to a new sense of normalcy.  But what if a different option was possible – one that would make medications and activity limits a thing of the past?  This became the reality for Renown Health patient Richard Preyer after receiving a hybrid catheter ablation. Thanks to the vigilant surgical care of Shining Sun, MD, a cardiologist at the Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health, and his compassionate team, Richard has a new lease on life.  Minimally Invasive with Maximal Results  An A-fib patient since 2010 who had been living with an unfinished ablation, the 59-year-old Carson City resident turned to the internet to look for alternate solutions. He had heard that the Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health was a top-tier location for cardiovascular care. “I changed health insurance plans through Nevada Health Link to ensure I could see a Renown cardiologist,” said Richard.   Choosing a cardiologist was an even easier decision for Richard. Dr. Sun’s introductory Find a Doctor video on Renown’s YouTube channel, where he displayed his expertise and determination, was more than enough for Richard to choose him as his cardiac care leader.  At his first visit, Dr. Sun reviewed Richard’s records, and noted his prior unfinished ablation. The nine-hour procedure had been performed several years ago. With the enhanced technologies at Dr. Sun's disposal, Richard was excited at the thought of his life potentially being changed for good – with a minimally-invasive solution.  Dr. Sun collaborated closely with Richard’s previous and current care teams – including a surgeon who performed a maze operation on him right before his surgery at Renown, to ensure his hybrid ablation was tailored uniquely to him. “Dr. Sun is clearly a very powerful cardiologist with many connections, and the coordination between his team and my other doctors was great,” said Richard.   After working on the exterior of the heart in the first phase of the surgery and the interior of the heart during the second phase, Richard’s hybrid ablation was successful, completing the unfinished portion of his previous ablation.   “Fixing A-fib can take one to three ablations, and sometimes it never holds,” said Richard. “That is one of the largest reasons why I am so thankful for this procedure and how it ended up.”  Life After A-fib  Now comes the long, arduous healing process, right? Not for Richard. With only eight incisions (four on each side of his chest), he was able to remove his bandages after two days, and he healed completely in one week.  “I was even back to taking three-mile walks within a week of my operation,” said Richard.  No more blood thinners.  No more activity limits. And most importantly for Richard, no more heart-stabilizing medications that came with side effects he didn’t enjoy. He attributes his enhanced life to Dr. Sun and his team.   “I highly recommend Dr. Sun and everyone that works with him,” he said. “Everyone in the group, from the nurses and anesthesiologists going above-and-beyond to the schedulers who helped me navigate the appointment process, made me have a lot of confidence. Their calm demeanors made so much difference.”  Today, Richard now enjoys elongated walks in the northern Nevada outdoors, exotic vacations with his wife and, as he describes, “feeling like I’m in my 40’s again.” Learn more about the region's leader in cardiac health, heart and vascular care here.

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