When a heart attack or heart failure occurs, the heart is no longer able to pump blood to the rest of the body, including the brain. This is known as cardiogenic shock and if not treated swiftly, can lead to permanent brain damage or even death. The good news is that Atlantic Health System Heart Care offers several emergency cardiovascular treatments designed to save the lives of patients in cardiac arrest and improve their long-term outcomes.
Cardiogenic Shock Treatment
Morristown Medical Center is the first hospital in the New Jersey with a dedicated cardiogenic shock team, consisting of an advanced heart failure specialist, an interventional cardiologist and a cardiac surgeon. Through a coordinated phone triage system, these experts provide rapid diagnosis and treatment recommendations to community hospitals that are caring for patients with symptoms of cardiogenic shock. Those who are treated at Morristown Medical Center have access to the latest technology and cardiac surgical procedures designed to restore normal heart function. This includes short-term and long-term cardiac assist devices (VADs), coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), defibrillators and pacemakers.
Atlantic Health System Heart Care is a national leader in the use of therapeutic hypothermia to minimize brain damage after cardiac arrest. Our emergency departments and cardiovascular teams at Chilton Medical Center, Morristown Medical Center, Newton Medical Center and Overlook Medical Center work quickly to reduce the patient’s body temperature to 91.7 degrees Fahrenheit for a 24-hour period. During this time, the individual is temporarily paralyzed and provided with pain and sedation medications for comfort. We then slowly rewarm the body to normal temperature and assess the extent of brain injury, if any. Candidates for induced hypothermia include those who are not responsive after cardiac arrest, require respiratory support to breathe, have no significant head trauma or bleeding, and have relatively stable blood pressure and heart rhythm.
Angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that uses a balloon-type catheter to widen arteries or veins and improve blood flow. During a heart attack, this treatment needs to be performed quickly to prevent damage to the heart muscle and improve the chance of survival. Chilton, Morristown and Overlook medical centers have teams of cardiovascular technicians, physicians and nurses who are highly-skilled in emergency angioplasty and available 24/7. Learn more about our rapid response measures >
Our Patient Transfer Center is a service offered to hospitals, physicians and family members who wish to transfer a patient to any Atlantic Health System hospital.