CMH Becomes One of Few NC Hospitals Approved for the Procedure
Caldwell Memorial Hospital announced recently that it has received approval from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) for reimbursement for carotid arterial stenting. According to the CMS website, only 21 hospitals in North Carolina (including CMH) are approved for reimbursement as Carotid Artery Stenting Facilities.
Carotid artery stenting is an important treatment option for atherosclerotic carotid artery disease, one of the main causes of stroke. During carotid artery stenting, an endovascular surgeon uses a stent (a very small tube of latticed metal) to open partially blocked carotid arteries. Because of surgical advancements, the procedure can be done from within the blood vessels using a guide catheter and local anesthesia. Prior to the development of endovascular surgical techniques, surgery for atherosclerotic carotid artery disease required general anesthesia and an incision in the patient's neck.
"Carotid artery stenting is possible because of a number of surgical advancements including catheterization and x-ray visualization," said Dr. Peter Purcell, the endovascular surgeon at The Caldwell Vascular Center. "Because we are able to open the partially blocked arteries from within the blood vessels themselves, the typical hospital stay has been reduced to 24 hours and many patients can resume regular activities within 72 hours."
Prior to the CMS approval of Caldwell Memorial Hospital as a Carotid Arterial Stenting Facility, area patients were referred to other hospitals in cities such as Asheville, Charlotte, or Winston-Salem for the procedure. Now area patients and their physicians have an approved local option for their care in Caldwell Memorial.
Physicians wishing to refer patients to Dr. Purcell at The Caldwell Vascular Center may do so by calling 828-758-5501 or 828-757-5100 for after-hours or emergency referrals. Referrals receive prompt evaluation with information sent to the referring physicians. The Caldwell Vascular Center is a division of Caldwell Memorial Hospital.