Advanced Care Through Clinical Trials
Innovations in cardiology are made by physicians who challenge and improve current practices and standards through clinical trials in order to advance the health of our patients. Cardiologists at the Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart and Vascular Care ask what is possible and launch clinical research trials to find answers.
Research Activities at the Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart and Vascular Care
In collaboration with Albert Einstein College of Medicine, the Heart and Vascular Center conducts a very active clinical research program that includes both industry-sponsored protocols and trials that are initiated within the Center to test novel treatment strategies for patients with heart failure. When appropriate, our patients are evaluated for inclusion in clinical trials that explore promising new medical therapies or devices. Because of our commitment to advancing medical technologies, patients have access to treatment that includes the most current clinical research options available.
The Heart and Vascular Center, in collaboration with Albert Einstein College of Medicine, is currently involved in more than 15 clinical studies testing the use of new devices, techniques or medications, including:
Cutting-Edge Medical Devices
Clinical trials are currently investigating the use of the latest biventricular pacemakers, defibrillators and heart pumps, and ventricular assist devices (VADs), for both the right (RVAD) and left (LVAD) ventricles. For example, LVADs are being evaluated as a bridge to transplant therapies because they can support heart function while the patient waits for a suitable transplant match. We are also testing the use of these VADs as an alternative to transplant. Related trials are studying clotting and infection related to these devices.
The Heart and Vascular Center is testing the use of the beta-2 agonist clenbuterol (a chemical that binds to a receptor of a cell and triggers a reaction) to build skeletal muscle in patients with end-stage heart disease. Our hope is that patients will realize a greater quality of life by improving overall strength.
The Heart and Vascular Center is comparing the use of advanced imaging techniques with more traditional imaging techniques, such as echocardiography. One aspect of research in this area includes the three-dimensional echocardiogram.
Research Across the Multiple Areas of Care
Interdisciplinary research drives clinical innovation. Our cardiac imaging team and the Department of Radiology are exploring how the latest imaging techniques in radiology can be used to map the veins on the surface of the heart. Such techniques may expedite treatment by shortening or possibly eliminating the need for invasive exploratory procedures.
Procedural and Medicinal Trials
Many of the trials at the Heart and Vascular Center examine the use of new procedures and medications. For example, we are involved with the trial of a medication to improve the safety of angioplasty. By devoting study to such possibilities, we aim to turn today's hypothetical therapies into new standards for tomorrow's care.