19th Jun 2012
Blackrock Clinic’s expertise and sector leading knowledge in the cardiac area is exceptionally strong. Over the last 25 years it is something we have focused on and worked hard to build a reputation around.
Dr Rory O’Hanlon, a young, dedicated and very enthusiastic cardiologist who works with us at Blackrock Clinic has helped us develop a further aspect to our cardiac service. He championed and worked to deliver the first dedicated Cardiac MRI scanner at the hospital, the first such machine in Ireland.
He has conducted extensive research on Cardiac MRI and worked closely with the ‘Father’ of Cardiac MRI, Professor Dudley Pennell at the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trust, London, for a number of years.
Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging (CMR) allows cardiologists to see the heart in more detail than any other imaging format available. This means that the non-invasive scans can more accurately identify patients in need of coronary angiography, coronary stenting or bypass operations. Images are of such high quality the scan can dramatically change the chosen course of treatment for patients with coronary artery disease and heart failure while allowing us to use the best possible treatment strategies such as defibrillator therapies and specialised forms of pacemakers.
Vitally, Cardiac MRI imaging can screen for silent evidence of inherited heart conditions especially those responsible for the death of one to two sportsmen every week in Ireland. Blackrock Clinic launches this crucial piece of equipment in the context of a growing heart failure epidemic in the Western World. As our population ages there are a greater number of people living with heart failure. Having an MRI dedicated to cardiac investigation means that at Blackrock Clinic we have the most concentrated expertise and experience in Ireland in this field. The scanner will be dedicated to the imaging of cardiac patients which far outstrips the productivity of other Irish hospitals in the cardiac area. Such productivity measurably delivers more skill, proficiency, judgement and command of scan-reading. This is a very important development for healthcare in Ireland because over 40% of patients who will benefit from the Cardiac MRI machine will be from the public system.