The only option
His daughter's college graduation was rapidly approaching, and Mr. Paracha wanted to see her walk across the stage.
"We offered Mr. Paracha an alternative that would allow him to return to everyday activities," said Harold Fernandez, MD, system director of surgical heart failure for Northwell Health and chief of cardiothoracic surgery at Southside Hospital. "His condition was critical, so the newly created ventricular assist device team moved quickly to implant a left ventricular assist device [LVAD] to keep the left chamber of his heart pumping."
An LVAD creates a passage from the left ventricle to the aorta. This mechanical pump helps a severely weakened heart pump blood effectively. Patients need to ensure the device is always connected to its external battery pack and control system.
Three days after entering NSUH, Mr. Paracha was the first patient to receive the LVAD at the Heart Hospital. Since then, the hospital has earned The Joint Commission's advanced certification for ventricular assist device destination therapy - making it the only Nassau County facility to qualify.
"The Heart Hospital continuously works to improve care and quality of life for advanced heart failure patients, who often have limited treatment options," said Alessandro Bellucci, MD, executive director at NSUH. "And since we earned The Joint Commission's advanced certification in less than a year, it's a real affirmation of our efforts in this evolving field."
When Mr. Paracha awoke after the four-hour implantation procedure, he felt noticeably better and couldn't wait to return home to his wife and seven children. Mr. Paracha's improvement continued during his recovery period, and after a thorough educational process about the device, he was released from the hospital.