Hospital spending $3 million in Cath Lab upgrades

MARQUETTE — Things look a whole lot different inside one of the Cath Labs at UP Health – System Marquette. That’s because officials with Duke LifePoint Healthcare recently upgraded one of four facilities at a price tag of $1.9 million.

At the center of the new lab: the Innova IGS 530 by GE Healthcare. This machine, used for cardiovascular and interventional imaging, allows doctors to quickly diagnose heart conditions and immediately treat them right there in the lab.

“It definitely advances what we’re able to do,” said Dr. Kristofer Dosh, interventional cardiologist at UP Health System – Marquette. “Some of the newer procedures are easier to do in this setting. Although the overall flow is similar to before, efficiency is definitely better.”

In total, the Cath Labs saw 2,400 patients last year. According to Dr. Dosh, the average procedure takes just under an hour.

The new state-of-the-art lab exposes patients and the medical staff to less radiation.

“What the staff actually gets in the room is called the scatter radiation that bounces off the patient, there’s a lot less of that,” said Brandy Jones, a lead cardiovascular technician at UP Health System – Marquette. “And the patient receives a lot less (radiation) because it’s more focal to the area that we’re working on.”

The new Cath Lab won’t be the ‘new one’ for very long. Duke LifePoint is upgrading another lab for one point $1.3 million. Construction of that facility is expected to be done next month.

“This really puts us on par with a lot of the bigger training institutions where a lot of this equipment is already available,” said Dr. Dosh. “Different types of imaging that were harder for us to use before now just streams seamlessly through this equipment.”

When the new $300 million hospital is completed, officials will move the new Cath Labs across town to be used there.

“There’s a lot of growth within cardiology as a whole,” said Dosh. “This allows us to stay at that level and keep offering new procedures to the community as they come out.”