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Thursday, March 5, 2020

St. Elizabeth's New Intervention Radiology Suite Offers Hope to Patients

New Intervention Radiology Suite is now open at St. Elizabeth in Fort Thomas.

The new IR Suite at St. Elizabeth in Fort Thomas opened on February 3, 2020.

By Jessie Eden

St. Elizabeth in Fort Thomas is celebrating the completion of a new, state-of-the-art radiology wing.

After a year of planning, designing and construction, the new Intervention Radiology Suite (referred to as the IR Suite for short) was finally completed. On Tuesday, the IR Suite held an open house to show off the new space and its capabilities.

Planning for the space began in January 2019 but the construction phase did not start until August 2019 due another department that had to be relocated. As of February 3, 2020, the space was completed.

"St. Elizabeth has been very generous with sharing money across facilities, said John Mitchell, Senior Vice President and CEO of St. Elizabeth Fort Thomas and Covington, "This was a cosmetic and tech upgrade and we were lucky to get the funding to do this. It was a three million dollar investment...but now St. Elizabeth Fort Thomas has the same technology as other locations in the area."

Guests explore the new space at the Open House for the new IR Suite at St. Elizabeth.

It has been quite the transformation from "Before" to "After". Laura Lloyd, St. E's Radiology and OP Spine Director, took Fort Thomas Matters on a tour of the former IR space.

St. Elizabeth's former IR space before the renovation.

The equipment in the former wing was from 2003 and patients had to cross a hallway from the holding area to enter the x-ray area.

St. Elizabeth's former IR space before the renovation.
Now, with the  new suite, patients are closer to the x-ray area. The new equipment -- the Siemens "Artis Q" angiography system -- has now been added to St. E's interventional imaging services. The new system features a revolutionary new X-ray tube and detector technology designed to improve minimally invasive therapy of diseases such as coronary artery disease, stroke and cancer.

One of the holding areas in the new IR Suite.

The technology is so advanced that the new X-ray tube can help physicians identify small vessels up to 70 percent better than conventional X-ray tube technology.

Equipment, storage and space in the new X-Ray area of the IR Suite.

In addition to technology that can save limbs and restore blood flow, the system can create 3D imaging of moving organs such as the lungs can be imaged in less than 3 seconds. 

A example of what the technology can do. Scroll down to see a video of this demonstration.

Through visualization and measurement of blood volumes in the liver or other organs, Siemens’ functional 3D imaging provides a basis for planning therapies such as chemo-embolization of hepatic tumors.

Vests and equipment in the X-ray area of the IR Suite.

Curious about how this technology works? Check out the video below;

Interventional Radiology Manager Kristi Rulli provided some examples of what conditions may benefit from the use of this new equipment. “We treat everything from the neck down. IR can treat everything but the heart. It restores flow to certain areas (legs) and can treat patients that have bleeds in the stomach or patients who have clots in their lungs (pulmonary embolism).”  This technology can also help with vascular access, and help aid patients on dialysis or patients who have picc lines.

Why is this technology important? It offers hope. “We are offering patients hope when they think there is none,” said Kristi. “For example, a diabetic patient who believes they may loose their leg can benefit from this technology and we can save their leg. That’s BIG.”

One of the new holding areas in the IR Suite.

Equipment, cabinets and work space in the new IR Suite.

Side control room that looks into the X-ray area in the IR Suite.

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