July 10, 2006
Contact: Patricia M. Hansen, Director of Communication/Public Affairs
UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Offers Specialized
Cardiac Care for Children
-Pediatric Cardiac Catheterization Available in New Jersey-
New Brunswick—UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (RWJMS) has expanded options for children with serious heart problems through the only comprehensive academic pediatric cardiac program in New Jersey. RWJMS faculty members staffing the pediatric cardiac unit at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) are bringing complex surgical procedures, previously unavailable in the state, to the New Brunswick campus. Among such advances is a pediatric cardiac catheterization laboratory which is the vanguard of catheterization facilities for children.
Joseph William Gaffney, MD, associate professor of pediatrics and chief of the division of pediatric cardiology, reports the importance of a dedicated catheterization lab for children is underlined by the fact that some of these patients are newborns or very young infants who require specialized anesthesiologists, world-class pediatric cardiologists, and highly trained nursing personnel and technologists equipped to manage their multifaceted care.
"Catheterization for children is done both for diagnostic and interventional purposes," Dr. Gaffney says. "It's a high level procedure often requiring general anesthesia and close monitoring. At RWJMS, we employ a coordinated team approach with intensive care provided by specialists who are trained and experienced in the post operative care of open heart patients."
Jeremy Grayson, MD, Pediatric Anesthesia Cardiac Section Head in the Department of Anesthesia, and the team of anesthesiologists are available to care for the pediatric catheterization patients.Currently, the pediatric anesthesiologists work closely with the pediatric cardiac surgeons.
William E. Hellenbrand, MD, clinical professor of pediatrics and director of the pediatric catheterization laboratory, is an internationally regarded interventional pediatric cardiologist who has published extensively on his sub-specialty of pediatric catheterization, and has been responsible for the design of pediatric catheterization laboratories worldwide.
"The lab at RWJMS is a cutting edge center that features the newest technology, two dedicated anesthesiologists, and an impeccably trained support team that combine to provide New Jersey families with services they once had to leave the state to receive," he reports.
Dr. Hellenbrand formerly served as chief of pediatric cardiology at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, director of the pediatric cardiac catheterization laboratory at Yale-New Haven Hospital. Currently, he also serves as director of invasive cardiology at Children’s Hospital of New York, Presbyterian Hospital. He has presented courses in pediatric cardiac strategies to the American Heart Association, North American Society for Cardiac Imaging, Cook County (Illinois) Graduate School of Medicine, plus a series of courses to the American College of Cardiology. In addition, he has served visiting professorships at the University of Maryland Medical School, University of California, San Diego, University of Michigan, South African Cardiology Society, Taiwan National Hospital and Seoul (Korea) National University.
UMDNJ-ROBERT WOOD JOHNSON MEDICAL SCHOOL
As one of the nation's leading comprehensive medical schools, UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, with campuses in New Brunswick, Piscataway and Camden, is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in education, research, health care delivery and the promotion of community health for the residents of New Jersey. With 2,500 full-time and volunteer faculty, the medical school maintains educational programs at the undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate levels for more than 1,500 students, as well as continuing education courses for health care professionals and community education programs.
As one of eight schools of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, the medical school encompasses 21 basic science and clinical departments and also integrates diverse clinical programs conducted at its 34 hospital affiliates and numerous ambulatory care sites in the region. UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School also hosts 85 centers and institutes; among them are The Cancer Institute of New Jersey, the Child Health Institute of New Jersey, the Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine, the Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute and the Stem Cell Institute of New Jersey.