Spring 2016

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PATRONS | Spring 2016 14 CLINICAL SPOTLIGHT W hen someone has a stroke, the timing of intervention can make the diff erence between life or death and debilitating loss of brain function. Studies have shown that prompt access to a neurologist reduces mortality or the long-term disabling eff ects of a stroke. To ensure round-the-clock stroke coverage is available to South Bay patients, Torrance Memo- rial Medical Center's Lundquist Cardiovascular Institute has collaborated with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center to develop a Telestroke program to off er 24/7 access to stroke specialists and ex- pedite the transfer of patients when higher-level intervention is needed. e program's launch at Torrance Memorial is made possible by a $250,000 gift to the Torrance Memorial Foundation from Francesca and Doug Deaver of Redondo Beach. " is partnership will facilitate instant collaboration between health care providers and stroke neurologists to produce a high accuracy diagnosis and result in the most eff ective treatment," says Eric Nakkim, co-medical director, Lundquist Emergency Department, Torrance Memorial Medical Center. "Research shows that Telestroke improves outcomes, reduces patient risks, decreases ambulance transport, shortens hospital stays and lowers costs through more timely and accurate diagnosis. We're very excited to off er this continuum of care to our patients." rough Telestroke, the videoconferencing technology will enable specialists at Cedars-Sinai to communicate with Torrance Memorial's emergency room team to examine the patient, interpret brain images, confi rm the diagnosis and provide recommendations, just as if they were at the bedside. e evaluating physician will recommend in the case of ischemic stroke (which occurs as a result of an obstruction within a blood vessel supplying blood to the brain) whether tissue plasminogen activator (TPA), a clot-busting medication, is needed. According to the American Heart Association, each 15-minute span between the onset of ischemic stroke (the cause of nine out of 10 strokes) and the delivery of TPA is an average of one month of disability-free life lost for that patient. Immediate intervention in the case of hemorrhage stroke is just as critical. Stroke Diagnosis Gets High Tech Mobile videoconferencing expedites diagnosis and treatment to save lives and prevent brain loss. Dr. Shlee S. Song, MD, neurologist at Cedars-Sinai, performs diagnos c tests on pa ents remotely, consul ng with Torrance Memorial's stroke team, Dr. Bernard Ullman, MD, neurologist, Eric Nakkim, MD, co-medical director, Emergency Department, and Ed Nazareth, RN, stroke coordinator. WRITTEN BY COLLEEN FARRELL PHOTOGRAPHED BY REMY HEYNES

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