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Innovation and Expertise Drive Hoag’s Cardiac Success

Hoag is the first place that Orange County residents think of when it comes to trusted cardiac and vascular care. And every day, Hoag strives to maintain that trust.

“Hoag has always been a place I felt confident in,” said David Smith, who underwent a transcatheter aortic valve replacement surgery (TAVR) at Hoag in 2012. “It is leading-edge in terms of their facility and their specialists.”

Smith was the sixth person to receive a new aortic valve through what was then a newly FDA approved alternative to open heart surgery. Hoag was one of a limited number of sites in the nation and the only site in Orange County selected to treat patients with aortic stenosis with TAVR, a minimally invasive surgical technique, which involves guiding a collapsible artificial valve into the heart using a catheter through a blood vessel in the leg or alternate site. Hoag remains a leader in providing this proven safe and effective alternative for patients who are unable to withstand open heart surgery. The hospital recently surpassed its 500th TAVR procedure.

In the early days of the program, TAVR was considered a last-resort procedure. The tireless work by Hoag’s team of specialists has helped to prove TAVR’s effectiveness; today eligibility restrictions have relaxed to allow intermediate-risk patients to undergo the minimally invasive procedure.

Therefore, deciding who is a candidate for TAVR versus surgical aortic valve replacement (SAVR) or a minimally invasive surgical approach requires dialogue and consensus among the physician team. Through the years, Hoag’s specialists have built up a level of trust and respect amongst each other that translates to superior patient care.

“The professionalism of the doctors and the nurses, it’s better at Hoag, in my experience,” said Mike Barnes, a world traveler who divides his time between San Antonio, Texas, and Newport Beach.

Due to his active lifestyle, Barnes has had medical experience spanning the globe, from Italy to the Netherlands. When doctors told him that he needed surgery to correct a heart murmur, Hoag was the only hospital he considered.

“This was the right place,” said Barnes, who underwent minimally invasive SAVR in 2013. “My heart is almost as good as new. The murmur is gone.”

The Jeffrey M. Carlton Heart & Vascular Institute at Hoag, which is generously supported by philanthropy, has been ranked in highest category for quality and successful outcomes by The Society of Thoracic Surgeons, a distinction achieved by only 5% of hospitals nationwide. It has been named by IBM Watson Health (formerly Truven Health Analytics)​ as one of the nation’s “50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals,” and is recognized as one of the preeminent cardiovascular centers on the West Coast and Orange County’s highest-volume, highest-rated cardiovascular program.

The industry accolades are gratifying, but nothing compares to the trust that patients consistently place in Hoag.

“Hoag is the best. I’ve spent more time there than I’ve wanted to,” said Smith, who is also a Hoag cancer survivor. “Yet, all the people I have worked with – the staff, the technical professionals – have all been phenomenal.”

For more information, call 888-912-7281.