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Methodist DeBakey Heart Center nurse to present findings at national vascular meetings

Houston, TX - 4/19/2006

A vascular imaging nurse at the Methodist DeBakey Heart Center will present at the national meetings for the Society for Vascular Ultrasound and the Society of Vascular Surgeons in Philadelphia from June 1 to 3.

The first presentation describes a unique, multi-disciplinary case involving vascular surgery and pathology, based upon results from the peripheral vascular lab, which is part of the Cardiovascular Imaging Center at Methodist.

Megan Hodge, RN, and technologists in Methodist’s vascular lab identified a large tumor in the leg of a young woman who came in for a study for varicose veins. An arteriogram showed more detailed visuals of the solitary fibrous tumor, which is very rare in legs and usually found in the lungs.

“This type of tumor is made up of spindle cells which are often benign,” said Hodge, clinical supervisor for the peripheral vascular lab at the Methodist DeBakey Heart Center and conference presenter. “Methodist vascular surgeons used embolization coils to block the blood flow to the tumor, then surgically removed it. Once this type of tumor is removed, the patients tend to recover quickly and without recurrence.”

Hodge is also presenting an oral scientific presentation on the use of contrast ultrasound to follow high risk patients who have endografts placed in their abdomens for abdominal aortic aneurysms.

Contrast ultrasound is widely available for use in echocardiography, but very few centers are using it for vascular cases because it can be used only for research purposes at this time. The Methodist DeBakey Heart Center has an active research portfolio currently testing contrast ultrasound as well as clinical trials studying minimally invasive treatments for abdominal and thoracic aortic aneurysms.