Our Accomplishments in Recent Years
Donors to the Grand River Hospital Foundation have made a significant impact on patient care at GRH through their support of our revitalized facilities. Thank you for your support in bringing these state-of-the-art projects to a reality.
Our New Initiative: Interventional Radiology
As our regional cancer program has grown, so have other services within GRH that support prevention, diagnosis and treatment of oncology patients. To keep pace with this growth, the Hospital requires an investment in its medical imaging technology.
The GRH Foundation’s new goal is to fully fund the cost of an Interventional Radiology (IR) unit over the next few years at a cost of $1.5 million.
What is Interventional Radiology?
Traditionally, surgery provided physicians the most targeted approach to diagnose, treat and manage a variety of medical conditions. Opening up and going inside the patient to surgically investigate the disease within was considered the only option. However, Interventional Radiology offers a minimally invasive alternative to open surgery. Using image guidance and minimally invasive catheters (small tubes) and probes, Interventional Radiology can diagnose and treat a range of illnesses.
For example, using image guidance, the Interventional Radiologist can make a tiny incision and implant a device under the skin of an oncology patient. Through this 'chemoport', blood draws can be made and chemotherapy or pain medication can be administered, eliminating the need for multiple needle pokes.
(l to r) Dr. Darren Knibutat, Dr. Danilo Wycoco, and team
lead Donna Chappell with the current IR unit
What are the benefits to Patients?
The benefits for patients are significant. There is minimal physical trauma to the patient and invasive surgery can be avoided. As well, pain is managed with sedation rather than riskier general anaesthesia. As a result, patient recovery times and complications such as infection are minimized. Not only are hospital stays shorter, but patients can return to their regular activities more quickly.
Why does GRH need a new IR Unit?
The existing IR unit uses old technology which severely limits its capability and functionality. As well, frequent breakdowns have become an urgent issue for the hospital.
A new IR unit will ensure reliability and stability, resulting in better diagnosis and treatment. Further, with its improved imaging resolution and techniques, we will be able to perform procedures not currently possible with the existing equipment, particularly important with our rapidly expanding cancer patient volumes.
(l to r) Dr. Wycoco, Donna Chappell and Dr. Knibutat,
examine images on the current unit
What is an example of a procedures that be performed with a new IR unit?
With the new technology, a Liver Embolization procedure can be done to treat a malignant liver tumour. Much like a cardiac catheterization, a small tube is inserted into the groin but, instead of targeting the heart, it is manipulated into the arteries supplying the liver. The Interventional Radiologist then injects a contrast dye to see the tumour, and deposits a chemo drug directly at the tumour site. The cancer is attacked on two fronts. First, chemotherapy is delivered directly to the tumour, without exposing the entire body to the effects of the drugs. Secondly the procedure embolizes or cuts off the blood supply to the tumour, essentially starving the tumour.
New IR Unit
Improved state-of-the-art Interventional Radiology equipment will enable us to provide a variety of oncology treatments not currently available with our existing equipment.
To date, over $1,400,000 (93% of goal) has been raised toward the $1.5 million goal