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Over the past five years, our interventional team has performed on average 550 congenital transcather interventional and diagnostic cases per year and has consistently ranked in the top five programs in the nation based on the US News and World report score for pediatric catheterization lab volume of interventions. Our cath lab regular performs the usual array of pediatric/congenital cases including pulmonary and aortic valvuloplasties, aortic, VSD, ASD, PFO and PDA closures, coronary artery fistula occlusions, and coartation and pulmonary artery angioplasty and stenting.
Our team also continues to perform a number of diagnostic and surgical interventions to support our surgical and transplant programs including diagnostic and interventional catheterizations such as balloon atrial septostomies. The UCLA cath team incorporates both Pediatric Cardiologists and Adult Congenital Interventionalists who work together to perform both diagnostic and interventional procedures from the youngest patients to the oldest patients with congenital heart disease.
In addition to the more standard cases, UCLA has a dedicated transcatheter valve program and has become an internationally recognized site for transcatheter valve replacements in the pulmonary position in addition to the aortic, tricuspid and mitral valves in congenital patients. UCLA is an accredited center for adult congenital heart disease and features a dedicated cath program for interventional adult congenital heart disease catheterization. UCLA also has a dedicated program for lymphatic interventions for patients with chylothorax, protein losing enteropathy and plastic bronchitis and a very active hybrid program with Dr Glen Van Arsdell and Dr Reshma Biniwale.
Given our extremely high interventional volume, favorable results and complexity of cases, our team has been able to innovate new clinical procedures and techniques and we have become a very attractive site for all of the FDA mandated, industry sponsored multi-centered trials on new device for pediatric and adult patients with congenital heart disease. Thus, our cath lab has access to all the “latest and greatest” technologies such as the Cardioform ASD device, Alterra pre-stent and the Harmony Valve. Our research team has over 25 active IRBs including the following large clinical trials: the Melody PB1016 Trial (Medtronic – UCLA is highest enroller), Amplatzer Post Market Study of Amplatzer ASD device (St Jude Medical – UCLA highest rate of enrollment), Compassion S3 Trial of the Sapien Valve for the Pulmonary Position (Edwards – UCLA highest enroller), Cardioform ASD Device (Gore), Harmony Trial (new pulmonary valve from Medtronic), Alterra Trial (new RVOT reducer from Edwards) and the Muscular VSD Occluder Study (St Jude Medical).
In addition to being a top choice for clinical trials of congenital devices, our team continues to focus on developing new and creative ways to treat congenital heart disease. We have one of the largest transcatheter valve sites for congenital heart disease in the world as well as extensive experience with perimembranous VSD closure. We have published extensively on new techniques and device for pulmonary, tricuspid and aortic valve replacements in patients with congenital heart disease. Additionally, our team works closely with many of the doctors in private practice in Los Angeles and Orange county who also perform procedures at UCLA.
Morris M Salem, MD
Director of Interventional Pediatric and Congenital Cardiology