Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology (667972)
Specialized in: diagnostic and interventional cardiology
About the department
The Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology at the Hospital Kassel offers the full range of medical services in the areas of its specialization. It provides high-precision invasive and non-invasive diagnostic tests, conservative and interventional treatment of various cardiovascular diseases. The department's clinical priority fields include medical care for patients with myocardial infarction, coronary heart disease, cardiac arrhythmias and heart valve diseases. In addition, the competence of the department's specialists includes the implantation of pacemakers, defibrillators, as well as cardiac resynchronization therapy. To provide emergency care to patients with acute coronary syndrome, the department has a specialized Chest Pain Unit, which operates around the clock. The unit is certified in accordance with the requirements of the German Cardiac Society, which confirms the impeccable quality of treatment. Despite the excellent medical and technical base of the department, the doctors are convinced that each patient needs an individual approach, support and understanding, and therefore the work of the team of cardiologists is also based on humanity and compassion. The department is headed by Prof. Dr. med. Rainer Gradaus.
In order to select the best treatment methods, the department's specialists need to comprehensively assess the patient's cardiovascular system. Such tests as stress and resting ECG, 24-hour Holter monitoring and 24-hour blood pressure measurement are the basis of cardiac diagnostics. In some cases, the results of these tests are sufficient for a cardiologist to make a diagnosis. Nevertheless, the specialists quite often have to resort to additional diagnostic methods, including pulmonary function testing and spiroergometry, 2D and 3D echocardiography, transthoracic echocardiography, transesophageal echocardiography, cardiac CT and MRI. In especially complex cases, the patient also requires interventional diagnostics using contrast agents – coronary angiography, fractional flow reserve measurement, optical coherence tomography, etc. The obtained diagnostic results serve as the basis for the elaboration of the most effective treatment regimen. The presence of advanced medical equipment in the department allows the doctors to treat many cardiac pathologies using interventional procedures, which do not require thoracotomy.
The department's specialists very often deal with the treatment of patients with cardiac arrhythmias, and therefore they have a wealth of experience in this field. The department has many effective catheter techniques for the treatment of arrhythmias. One of the most requested procedures is the implantation of a pacemaker. The department's specialists perform more than 350 such interventions annually. In most cases, the procedure is performed under local anesthesia. Depending on the individual clinical indications, single, double or triple chamber pacemakers can be used. The department implants the innovative pacemakers, with which patients can undergo MRI scanning in the future. It is noteworthy that the department's cardiologists also successfully implant the advanced MICRA pacemaker, which is 10 times smaller than a standard pacemaker. The innovative device looks like a tiny capsule. The main advantage of the technology is that there is no need to implant electrodes, which connect the pacemaker to the heart. The MICRA system attaches to the heart wall with tiny titanium handles and emits electrical impulses to the heart through a microdevice at the end of the pacemaker. The service life of such a pacemaker is 10 years. In addition to pacemakers, the department uses defibrillators and cardiac resynchronization therapy to treat heart rhythm disturbances.
Interventional treatment of heart valve disease is also of particular interest to the department's medical team. The focus is on patients with aortic valve stenosis and mitral insufficiency. /to treat aortic valve stenosis, the modern technique of transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is used. This method is best suited for elderly patients with aortic valve stenosis, since traditional surgical repair of the pathology is associated with high risks to the life of such patients. Mitral valve insufficiency is treated using the MitraClip technique. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia. During the procedure, a catheter is inserted through a vein in the groin in order to provide access to the right atrium. When performing the procedure, the cardiologist punctures the atrial septum in the left atrium and delivers a MitraClip attached to the catheter. The device is precisely fixed under X-ray and ultrasound guidance. Upon the completion of all therapeutic manipulations, the catheter is removed from the atrium.
The department's range of surgical services includes:
- Non-invasive diagnostics
- Resting and stress ECG
- 24-hour Holter monitoring
- 24-hour blood pressure measurement
- Pulmonary function testing
- 2D and 3D echocardiography
- Transthoracic echocardiography
- Transesophageal echocardiography
- Doppler echocardiography
- Cardiac CT
- Cardiac MRI
- Invasive diagnostics
- Coronary angiography
- Fractional flow reserve measurement
- Optical coherence tomography
- Myocardial biopsy
- Non-invasive diagnostics
- Interventional therapeutic procedures
- Transluminal balloon angioplasty
- Balloon dilatation and stent implantation for stenosis
- High-frequency rotablation for dilatation or reopening of a coronary artery lumen
- Recanalization of chronic coronary artery occlusions
- Emergency interventional catheter treatment for myocardial infarction
- Interventional closure of foramen ovale
- Interventional closure of type II atrial septal defect
- Interventional closure of the left atrial appendage
- Implantation of pacemakers and defibrillators
- Cardiac resynchronization therapy
- Transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) for the treatment of aortic valve stenosis
- MitraClip technique for the treatment of mitral insufficiency
- Mitral valve annuloplasty using the innovative Carillon system
- Interventional therapeutic procedures
- Other diagnostic and treatment methods
Since 2008, Prof. Dr. med. Rainer Gradaus has been heading the Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology at the Hospital Kassel. The specialist obtained his doctoral degree at the Westphalian Wilhelm University of Muenster. This was followed by internships at the hospitals in America. Upon returning to Muenster, Dr. Gradaus became a doctor at the University Hospital Muenster, where he underwent specialized training in Cardiology and Cardiac Intensive Care. In 2004, Prof. Rainer Gradaus had his habilitation. Four years later, he became an Extraordinary Professor at the Westphalian Wilhelm University of Muenster. In the same year, the doctor became a Member of the European Society of Cardiology.
Photo of the doctor: (c) Klinikum Kassel
Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Cardiology.
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