Southside Hospital Physicians Converge to Help Arrhythmia Sufferers

Cardiac Surgery
Photo Credit: nContact

BAY SHORE, NY – Southside Hospital is now offering patients a more comprehensive solution to their irregular heart beat with a procedure that involves two cardiac physicians in different specialty areas.

Southside Hospital in Bay Shore recently began using the Convergent Approach, which involves an electrophysiologist and cardiac surgeon performing surgery together, to more invasively treat arrhythmias, or irregular heartbeats. With this procedure, cardiac surgeon Robert Kalimi, MD, vice chairman of cardiothoracic surgery at Southside, uses radiofrequency energy to burn off the heart tissue that is causing irregular rhythms from outside the heart and Erik Altman, MD, chief of electrophysiology at the hospital, uses a catheter to confirm that all areas causing the abnormal electrical signals have been removed from inside the heart.  Prior to the Convergent Approach, cardiac surgeons would only perform the burning part from inside the heart.

“Creating a ‘heart team’ with a cardiac surgeon and an electrophysiologist allows Southside’s patients to benefit from both physicians’ expertise,” Dr. Kalimi said.

Frank Manetta, MD, thoracic surgeon at Southside, who also performs these procedures, noted, “This procedure is performed using laparoscopic techniques.” 

“This treatment is very effective for patients who have not gotten the kind of results they were hoping for from other manners of treatment,” Dr. Altman added.

The Convergent approach has also been utilized at LIJ Medical Center in New Hyde Park and North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset.

For more information about Southside Hospital’s usage of the Convergent Approach, call 631-968-3525.

About North Shore-LIJ Health System -- North Shore-LIJ is changing its name to Northwell Health in January 2016.
One of the nation's largest health systems, the health system delivers world-class clinical care throughout the New York metropolitan area, pioneering research at The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, a visionary approach to medical education highlighted by the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine, and healthcare coverage to individuals, families and businesses through the CareConnect Insurance Co. Inc. The health system cares for people at every stage of life at 21 hospitals and about 450 outpatient physician practices throughout the region. The health system’s owned hospitals and long-term care facilities house more than 6,600 beds, employ more than 13,300 nurses and have affiliations with about 10,300 physicians. With a workforce of more than 61,000, the health system is the largest private employer in New York State.  For more information, go to

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