(201) Health 2021 Edition - Page 14


It ’ sacommon complaint among hospital inpatients : They ’ re always being poked and prodded for blood samples . Not only is it painful and annoying , but the practice can lead tobruising . �oly Name Medical Center has responded tothis by becoming the first hospital in New Jersey �among agrowing number of health systems nationwide � to offer needle-free blood draws . Aspart ofthe new standard of care known as “ one-stick hospitalization ,” �oly Name staff are using the PIVO device made by Velano Vascular toextract high quality blood draws from patients ’ IV lines .

The PIVO device is aneedle-free , single-use piece ofequip- ment that uses the patient ’ s existing IV line asaconduit to a vein� it resembles a�-inch capped “ pigtail ” that is attached to the IV catheter in the patient ’ sarm . When it is time to draw blood , avacuum-sealed blood collection tube is attached to it� once the sample iscollected , the line is flushed and anew cap is put in place . Besides reducing the need for uncomfortable needle sticks for blood tests , the process preserves the patient ’ s veins and minimizes the reliance on central lines for blood draws . Many patients are able to sleep through middleof-the-night blood draws when the PIVO device is used , and say they no longer dread being pricked by needles again and again .
Nurses and phlebotomists at the medical center were trained how to do the procedure virtually using technology provided by the company , in accordance with COVID-1� safety protocols . “ We were soexcited about it ,” says chief nursing officer Michele Acito .“ Alot of times , patients are on blood thinners after having astroke , heart attack or surgery . If you stick them over and over , they can start to look bruised , almost like someone beat them up .” Not having to puncture the skin over and over improves patient care , she says .

Traditional radiation therapy treatments for cancer use acombination ofimaging scans and external markers , such asmarkers on the skin , to ensure that radiation isdelivered to the correct target inside the patient ’ s body . Accuracy is critically important � and sometimes challenging , due to apatient ’ sinternal movements� aprostate rotates down as the bladder fills , for example . Breathing and involuntary twitching can cause external movement , too .

Now , Valley-Mount Sinai Comprehensive Cancer Care , part of the Valley �ealth System , has become the only hospital setting onthe east coast , and only fourth inthe country , to use new technology designed to yield more precise , customized care . The ExacTrac Dynamic from Brainlab allows doctors to scan 300,000 points onthe surface ofapatient ’ s body � more than 10 times the number possible with other systems . �igh-resolution surface and thermal imaging helps them analyze the patient ’ s shape and show movement , anatomy and body temperature inreal time . These capabilities will be especially useful for treating cancers near areas of the body where breathing orother involuntary movements often affect the position ofthe radiation beam ’ s target , such as breast , lung and prostate cancer .
“ This evolution intechnology can account for patients ’ breathing , and only delivers treatment when their chest is in the correct position , which avoids damage tohealthy tissues ,” says Dr . Thomas �ole , aradiation oncologist atValley .“ We ’ ll be able tooffer shorter courses of high-dose radiation to those who may not have previously been eligible due to their anatomy .” These include individuals with hip replacements , whose metal implant complicates radiation treatments for prostate cancer , and patients with darker skin tones , for whom the current external cameras don ’ t pick up movements aswell� for them , the new thermal imaging will add alayer of verification .
Patients treated with ExacTrac Dynamic technology may also experience shorter , more targeted treatments , and this can decrease the risk ofboth short-term and long-term side effects .
2021 EDITION ( 201 ) HEALTH