HCN News & Notes

Mercy Medical Center Offers Breakthrough Treatment for Pulmonary Embolism

SPRINGFIELD — While all blood clots present a significant health threat, a pulmonary embolism can require immediate hospital treatment. Mercy Medical Center is the first hospital in Western Mass. to offer a new, non-surgical treatment option for pulmonary embolism patients with Inari Medical’s FlowTriever system.

A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot in the pulmonary artery leading to the lungs. Time is of the essence in the treatment of a pulmonary embolism because, if the clot breaks away, it can move into the lungs and result in death. Depending on the size of the blood clot, typical treatment involves the use of blood thinners such as heparin or warfarin, or stronger clot busters called thrombolytics. Surgery may also be considered as a treatment option.

Recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the FlowTriever is a mechanical thrombectomy device that removes blood clots through aspiration. It is also able to capture and remove large clots from big vessels in a single session.

During the procedure with the FlowTriever, a small incision in the groin is used to thread a catheter through a vein to the site of the blood clot. Once in place, the device disrupts the clot and applies suction to remove the pulmonary embolism from the patient’s body and restore blood flow. By using the FlowTriever system, the patient is able to avoid not only open surgery and medications that may increase the risk of serious bleeding, but also a lengthy hospital stay. The procedure is performed at Mercy Medical Center exclusively by Dr. Elie Semaan, chief of Vascular Surgery.

“The FlowTriever system is a breakthrough treatment option for patients presenting with massive and submassive pulmonary embolism,” Semaan said. “Upon completion of the procedure, these patients experience immediate symptom relief and improved vital signs, in addition to less bleeding and a quicker recovery.”

Dr. Robert Roose, chief medical officer of Mercy Medical Center, added that “our patients are at the center of everything we do at Mercy Medical Center, and the addition of the FlowTriever system is another example of our commitment to investing in the most advanced technology to support our clinicians in the delivery of safe, high-quality care.”