Hackensack Meridian Jersey Shore University Medical Center was one of the first hospitals in New Jersey to provide TransCarotid Artery Revascularization (TCAR), the most advanced minimally invasive procedure used to dramatically reduce the risk of stroke in patients being treated for carotid artery disease.
Habib Khan, M.D., chief of Vascular Surgery at the academic medical center, was recently named a 2021 TCAR Clinical Operator of Experience for improving carotid artery disease treatment using the innovative TCAR procedure. Only two surgeons in the state have achieved this recognition, heightening Jersey Shore University Medical Center’s distinctive cardiovascular and neuroscience expertise.
Carotid artery disease is a form of atherosclerosis, or a buildup of plaque, in the two main arteries in the neck that supply oxygen-rich blood to the brain. If left untreated, carotid artery disease can often lead to stroke. The disease is estimated to be the source of stroke in up to a third of cases, with more than 427,000 new diagnoses of the disease made every year in the U.S. alone. “TCAR is an important option in the fight against stroke and is particularly suited for the large portion of patients we see who are at higher risk of complications from carotid surgery due to age, anatomy, or other medical conditions,” said Dr. Khan.
TCAR developer, Silk Road Medical, reviewed physicians across the country to recognize those who have embraced the TCAR procedure. TCAR Clinical Operators of Experience have demonstrated a focus on patient outcomes through appropriate patient selection and a well-trained and credentialed, specialized vascular team. “This recognition helps confirm Dr. Khan’s and our academic medical center’s commitment to delivering the highest quality and most advanced care to our community,” said Kenneth N. Sable, M.D., MBA, FACEP, regional president, Hackensack Meridian Health, Southern Market.
“TCAR is unique in that blood flow is temporarily reversed during the procedure so that any small bits of plaque that may break off during the procedure are diverted away from the brain, preventing a stroke from happening,” said Dr. Khan. “A stent is then placed inside the artery to stabilize the plaque, minimizing the risk of a future stroke. Patients recover quickly and almost always go home the next day to return to full and productive lives with less pain and small scars.”
Prior to the development of TCAR, the main treatment option for severe carotid artery disease was an open surgical procedure called carotid endarterectomy (CEA). CEA removes plaque from inside the carotid artery to restore normal blood flow to the brain, but the large incision leaves a visible scar the length of the neck and carries risks of surgical complications, including bleeding, infection, heart attack and cranial nerve injuries that can cause issues with swallowing, speaking and sensation in the face.
“I’m very excited Dr. Khan and our TCAR team have been recognized for their efforts to modernize carotid artery repair and enhance safety for our patients,” said Vito Buccellato, MPA, LNHA, chief hospital executive, Jersey Shore University Medical Center.
For information about services, visit www.jerseyshoreuniversitymedicalcenter.com. For a free physician referral, call 800-822-8905. Hackensack University Medical Center’s David John O’Connor, M.D., is the state’s only other TCAR Clinical Operator of Experience.
From left, is Thomas L. Bauer, M.D., MBA, chair of Surgery, Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Habib Khan, M.D., and David Rust, manager, Silk Road Medical.