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SBUH Auxiliary Purchases Lifesaving Medical Equipment
Devices will improve survival rates for patients experiencing cardiac arrest

The Stony Brook University Hospital (SBUH) Auxiliary recently spent $75,000 to purchase hypothermia treatment equipment and mechanical CPR devices for patients being treated for sudden cardiac arrest in the Emergency Department and intensive care units at SBUH. Pictured here with the CPR devices, known as “thumpers,” from left to right, are members of the SBUH Auxiliary Board Uta Dee, Maxine Semmel, Caroline G. Levine, Gloria Snyder and Janice Rohlf; Christine Schuhmacher, Quality Management Practitioner in the Continuous Quality Improvement Department at SBUH; Auxiliary Board members Barbara Delfyett and Loraine Sommer; SBUH Interim CEO Fred Sganga, FACHE; and Auxiliary Board members Janet Hovnanian, Pat Macarchuk, Linda Shamash and Karen Villanueva-Walsh.
STONY BROOK, N.Y., May 24, 2012 – The Stony Brook University Hospital (SBUH) Auxiliary has purchased $75,000 in medical equipment that will help save the lives of patients who are being treated for sudden cardiac arrest in SBUH’s Emergency Department and intensive care units.
The Auxiliary’s purchase of hypothermia treatment equipment and mechanical CPR devices will reduce complications for patients suffering cardiac arrests and improve their prospects of survival, according to Mark Henry, MD, Chief of Emergency Services at SBUH.
Four automatic mechanical CPR devices will be purchased for the Emergency Department and adult intensive care units. The devices provide consistent CPR for extended periods of time, providing circulatory support and freeing up medical professionals to perform other lifesaving therapies during cardiac arrest, Dr. Henry said.
Sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for an estimated 250,000 deaths each year, according to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation. A recent clinical study found that manual CPR delivers American Heart Association (AHA) approved compressions only 37 percent of the time, Dr. Henry said, compared to 97 percent for mechanical compression devices. The new equipment will provide continuous compressions, as well as an integrated ventilator to help patients breathe.
The hypothermia unit will be used to treat cardiac arrest patients in the Emergency Department and adult intensive care units, according to Sam Parnia MD, PhD, MRCP, Assistant Professor, Department of Critical Care Medicine, Stony Brook University School of Medicine. Therapeutic hypothermia is applied after the patient’s heartbeat has been restored through CPR and electronic counter shock with a defibrillator, he said. Patients are cooled to about six to eight degrees below normal temperature and put into a medically induced coma for about 24 hours before bringing their temperatures back to normal.
Therapeutic hypothermia is now included in AHA guidelines for treating cardiac arrest patients, after the benefits of cooling in cardiac arrest were demonstrated in two landmark studies published in the New English Journal of Medicine in 2002. The previous method of cooling patients was to use cooling blankets and create “a cooling sandwich,” Dr. Parnia said. This could result in excessive cooling of patients, which could lead to adverse effects such as irregular heart rhythms. The new machine will allow body temperature to be more precisely controlled to prevent adverse outcomes, he said.
“These purchases will literally save the lives of patients who are treated for sudden cardiac arrest at Stony Brook,” said Fred S. Sganga, FACHE, Interim Chief Executive Officer at SBUH. “We are extremely grateful to the Auxiliary for their meaningful contributions to patient care.”
The SBUH Auxiliary is a volunteer organization made up of a diverse group of men and women committed to raising money for hospital projects for which other sources of money are not readily available. Since its formation in 1981, the Auxiliary has raised more than $6 million for hospital projects, services and equipment. Membership in the Auxiliary includes an invitation to the annual luncheon, advance notice of all special events, quarterly newsletters and an annual report. For more information about the Auxiliary, call (631) 444-2699.
About Stony Brook University Hospital:
Stony Brook University Hospital (SBUH) is Long Island’s premier academic medical center. With 597 beds, SBUH serves as the region’s only tertiary care center and Level 1 Trauma Center, and is home to the Stony Brook Heart Institute, Stony Brook Cancer Center, Stony Brook Long Island Children’s Hospital, Stony Brook Neurosciences Institute, and Stony Brook Digestive Disorders Institute. SBUH also encompasses Suffolk County’s only Level 4 Regional Perinatal Center, state-designated AIDS Center, state-designated Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program, state-designated Burn Center, the Christopher Pendergast ALS Center of Excellence, and Kidney Transplant Center. It is home of the nation’s first Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center. To learn more, visit www.stonybrookmedicine.edu.

© Stony Brook University 2012 



© Stony Brook University