x
Breaking News
More () »

Baptist Health first in region to offer new, innovative heart failure treatment

The treatment requires a minimally invasive procedure under general anesthesia and can be done as an outpatient procedure. The patients usually go home the same day.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A new heart failure treatment is being offered at Baptist Health in Jacksonville.

According to health officials, Baptist Health is the first health care system in the region to implant an innovative, pacemaker-like device to improve cardiovascular function in advanced heart failure patients.

Heart failure happens when the heart cannot pump enough blood and oxygen to support other organs in the body. It impacts about 6.2 million adults in the U.S., Baptist Health said.

The BAROSTIM NEO® System is a U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved electrical stimulator. 

How it works is that a device is implanted under the collarbone with a lead going up to the carotid artery, where it stimulates the heart’s natural blood pressure sensors. These sensors, called baroreceptors, detect the blood pressure and send information to the brain, health officials said.

The brain responds by allowing proper blood pressure to be maintained via relaxing blood vessels, slowing the heart rate and reducing fluid in the body through improved kidney functioning.

This summer, the first BAROSTIM NEO® implant took place at Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville, followed by three other procedures on the same day. The lead vascular surgeon performing the procedure, Erin Moore, MD, a physician with Cardiothoracic & Vascular Surgical Associates PA, was joined by Baptist Heart Specialists’ clinical cardiac electrophysiologists Christopher Austin, MD and Aaditya Vora, MD.

"We are excited to bring this new technology to our advanced heart failure patients. The BAROSTIM NEO® implant uses the power of the brain and nervous system to help these patients feel better, be more active and have a better quality of life,” Dr. Moore said.

The treatment requires a minimally invasive procedure under general anesthesia and can be done as an outpatient procedure. The patients usually go home the same day or the next day, the hospital said.

“The device is continuously fine-tuned to provide optimal stimulation to the carotid baroreceptors, which in turn, allows the body to turn off many of the negative signals that impact the heart,” Dr. Vora explained. “It may be turned on and off by medical personnel following implantation and is even programmable for the individual patient’s unique cardiac health.”

“This device can change the trajectory for advanced heart failure patients,”  Dr. Austin added. “It offers substantial relief to those patients who have not been helped by medical therapy or who are not candidates for other cardiac devices.”

Watch the video below to learn more about this new treatment.