New CATH lab service available at EORH

T-L Photo/ROBERT A. DEFRANK Brittney Vinci, CATH lab manager and cardiopulmonary director at East Ohio Regional Hospital, looks over equipment at the hospital’s new CATH lab, which diagnoses and treats cardiovascular disease.

MARTINS FERRY — East Ohio Regional Hospital is expanding its services to the local community.

The latest addition is a cardiac catheterization lab, or CATH lab, to diagnose and treat cardiovascular disease.

Brittney Vinci, CATH lab manager and cardiopulmonary director, said the addition has long been planned, since close to the hospital’s reopening in February 2021.

“Everything’s brand new, state of the art,” she said.

“In November of 2021 we started this project to get the X-ray machine and the monitoring system,” she said. “Last Thursday we officially opened.”

She pointed out the examination table and monitors that can show the internal procedure.

“We completely gutted the room,” she said. “Since the hospital reopened, this is the first time we were able to unveil the CATH lab.”

Vinci described the procedure.

“We get them on the table. They lay on their back. We get them prepped and draped. We have all the equipment on a sterile table. Once the physician comes in, he’ll get access mainly through your right radial artery. He can also go through your groin and then after we get access we’ll take a catheter up to your heart. We’ll take some pictures with some contrast,” she said.

“When we do a diagnostic heart path, the catheter is engaged into your coronary arteries. We put some contrast in there and that will show the outline of your arteries. It’ll show if there’s any kind of blockage or any issue with your coronaries. Then we also go into your left ventricle with a catheter. It shows us how well your heart is pumping and shows us how well your blood is getting back to the rest of the body,” she said.

The lab is also capable of checking arteries and veins in a patient’s legs.

Vinci said the lab has already seen five patients so far. She said the hospital found a high demand for this service.

“There’s a lot of cardiovascular issues in this area, so it’s a good thing to give the community another option to get their cardiovascular health checked out and taken care of,” she said, adding feedback among the community has been very positive.

“I’ve worked in the field since 2013, and I think this machine and the monitoring system is probably one of the best I’ve used,” Vinci said.

She added that the hospital looks forward to providing more services through the lab.

“After we get to 200 successful diagnostic heart caths, we can apply to Ohio’s Administrative Code to then become interventional, so we could put in stents when we find a blockage in the heart.”


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