Revolutionary Lung Valve is First FDA-Approved Breathing Aid Without Major Surgery
BALTIMORE— The Angelos Center for Lung Disease at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center has become the first medical facility in the state to offer endoscopic lung volume reduction (ELVR), using a new FDA-approved lung valve that is positioned in damaged lung airways without surgery, and allows patients with severe emphysema to breathe easier.
Sy A. Sarkar, MD, FCCP, FACP, DAABIP, board certified in interventional pulmonology, is currently screening patients at the Angelos Center for Lung Disease on the hospital campus, to see if the breakthrough medical device is right for them. “There is no surgery involved,” he said. “Using a bronchoscope, we place valves, into a lobe of the lung under anesthesia.”
More than 3.5 million Americans suffer from emphysema, a severe, progressive form of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, (COPD). In emphysema, a breakdown of small air sacs in the lungs, known as aveoli, cause air to become trapped in the diseased portions of the lungs each time the patient inhales. The lungs hyperinflate and healthier lung tissue is compressed, causing patients to feel as though they are suffocating. Normal activities like walking, eating or bathing are challenging.
Once in position, the implanted valves will occlude any further airflow into the diseased portion of the lung and allow air trapped to be exhaled out of the patient, thereby reducing the volume in the overinflated area. The remaining lobes are then able to fully expand and work more efficiently, improving overall lung function. Patients who received the treatment experienced an increased exercise capacity. They can walk further, experience less shortness of breath and enjoy a better quality of life.
“This approach represents a major advancement in treating patients who have been living very compromised lives, most for a long time, and we’re doing it without surgery,” Dr. Sarkar said. “There’s no cure for emphysema and once medical therapy has achieved maximum medical benefit, the remaining current treatment options have been invasive lung surgery. This is revolutionary alternative to achieve lung volume reduction using a minimally invasive approach. It’s life changing, and I’m very excited that here at the Angelos Center, we can offer it to the patients who qualify.”
Those interested in the minimally invasive treatment option can schedule a screening at the Angelos Center for Lung Disease by calling: 443-777-2467.
About MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center
MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center is a not-for-profit 353-bed community teaching hospital located in the White Marsh section of eastern Baltimore County, Maryland. MedStar Franklin Square provides many medical and healthcare services, including a broad range of healthcare specialties, advanced technologies and treatments not traditionally found at community hospitals. The hospital is ranked third in admissions among all Maryland hospitals and our Emergency Department treats more than 80,000 patients annually. MedStar Franklin Square is accredited by the Joint Commission and certified as a Primary Stroke Center and has earned some of the nation’s most prestigious quality awards including Magnet Designation for excellence in nursing, the Excellence Award for Quality Improvement from the Delmarva Foundation and inclusion in the U.S. News & World Report Best Hospital specialty ranking for four consecutive years. With more than 3,300 employees, MedStar Franklin Square is one of the largest employers in Baltimore County. Visit medstarfranklin.org for more information.