First-Generation Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites Install 5 Axis Biplane Positioner and Flat Panel Detectors at Columbus Children's Heart Center

July 27, 2005

In an innovative new approach to cardiac care, physicians at The Columbus Children’s Heart Center have coupled the benefits of cardiothoracic surgery and interventional cardiology in two suites to help critically ill newborns, children and adults with congenital heart disease achieve improved therapeutic outcomes.  Known as the Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites, these facilities harness state-of-the-art technology that allows surgeons and interventionists to collaboratively perform a wide range of innovative new hybrid procedures.  

Since June of 2004, Columbus Children’s Hospital has been operating the country’s first of its kind, Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites.  Now one year later, the existing imaging equipment is being replaced by the world’s first 5 Axis Biplane Positioner with Flat Panel Detector (FPD) imaging.  The new equipment allows surgeons and interventionalists to view images more clearly, as well as to improve access to patients.

John P. Cheatham, MD, Director of Cardiac Catheterization and Interventional Therapy and a faculty member at The Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health, worked with colleagues at Columbus Children’s Hospital and the President and CEO of Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation and his design team to develop this new equipment.  As part of the development phase, Dr. Cheatham traveled to Nasu, Japan to meet with Toshiba engineers.  Thomas N. Hansen, MD, CEO, and Mark Galantowicz, MD, Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Co-director of the Heart Center, accompanied him on the trips to provide their input and direction.  Toshiba engineers where shown actual cardiac catheterization and surgery film footage to allow them to see how the equipment is used in the Hybrid Suites, and to see what modifications to the equipment were needed.

Dr. Cheatham, Dr. Galantowicz and Dr. Hansen spearheaded the project using input from all areas of the hospital who utilize the suites.  As a result, this collaboration with Toshiba in Japan and its subsidiary Toshiba America Medical Systems (TAMS) has allowed development of the most innovative imaging equipment available in the world – the 5 Axis Biplane Positioner with FPD.  Currently, the first prototype has been installed in Hybrid Suite 1 by the engineers from Japan and America, with help from the team at Columbus Children's Hospital.  After initial testing and evaluation is complete, the first production model will then be installed in Hybrid Suite 2.

The Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites deviate from traditional cardiac care delivery by allowing surgical and interventional catheterization procedures to be performed by a single interdisciplinary team in one setting.  This approach supports enhanced patient outcomes through shorter and safer procedures that require less recovery time and rehabilitation.  The expansive suites accommodate the collective catheterization and surgical teams, and facilitate rapid information sharing with new technology from Toshiba America Medical Systems and Stryker Communications.  The Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites are designed to meet the special needs of newborns, adolescents and adults with congenital heart disease. 

Congenital heart defects are present in about one percent of live births.  While most often scientists are unsure of how the child contracted a specific defect, advancements in pediatric cardiac care -- such as the hybrid procedures performed at Columbus Children’s Heart Center -- are changing treatment options to help children live healthy, normal lives.  There are a variety of congenital heart diseases, and treatment can begin, or continue into, adulthood. 

The two Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites feature: 

- The first installation of the most advanced 5 Axis Biplane x-ray imaging technology with Flat Panel Detectors (FPD) from Toshiba America Medical Systems for a better quality picture which facilitates more accurate assessment and diagnosis and improved access to patients, regardless of size or complexity of disease.

- Six interconnected, flat panel, high-resolution display screens (Stryker Vision) for superior visualization and better information exchange among the team members.  At least two monitors are visible to all team members at any time, from any location.

- 930 square feet of working space to accommodate the team involved in a hybrid case (surgeons, interventional cardiologists, electrophysiologists, echocardiographers, cardiac anesthesiologists, advanced level nurse practitioners, physicians’ assistants, cath/O.R. nurses, technicians and perfusionists).

- A large, central control room where additional staff members have the ability to transmit information anywhere in the suite, at remote sites within the hospital, or even to countries around the world, enabling Columbus Children’s Heart Center faculty to consult with physicians in distant countries and to serve as a teaching hospital as further advancements are made.

The first procedure performed in the Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites took place on May 25, 2004, and included treatment for a newborn with hypoplastic left heart syndrome.  Since then many patients have undergone treatment in the suites.  The Heart Center opened its 100-seat Telemedicine Center in July 2004.  The capabilities of the Telemedicine Center will enable viewing of any image from inside the two suites or cardiac O.R.s to provide educational opportunities toward advancement of congenital heart disease treatment strategies. 

The Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization Suites can accommodate any catheter treatment, selective surgical cases, or any collaborative hybrid procedures.  Interventional cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons working together in these suites will reduce the amount of time required to correct complex heart disease and reduce the emotional and physical stress placed on a patient and their family – which translates into less pain, less scarring and a faster recovery time.


About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2019-20 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.5 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. More information is available at