Meadowlands Hospital Saves Lives During Hurricane Sandy
Late Wednesday night, during the heaviest storms of Hurricane Sandy, Meadowlands Hospital Medical Center in Secaucus saved the life of a 38-year-old Trinidadian male.
The patient, a local Secaucus resident, sought medical assistance at the Meadowlands Hospital Emergency Department, presenting complaints of severe and crushing chest pain, vomiting, and sweating. During this time, all other hospitals in Hudson County were closed and patients were being diverted to Meadowlands Hospital.
Despite the Emergency Department being overwhelmed, it turned out to be this patient’s lucky day. A Cardiologist, Dr. Petr Tsenovoy, happened to be helping facilitate patient care in the ER at a time of significantly increased activity.
The patient's history was promptly taken and an electrocardiogram ordered. Minutes later, it became evident that the patient was suffering from a deadly ST segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), which occurs when a coronary artery is totally occluded or blocked by a clot. This prompted the need for additional, immediate medical care.
Because of the severe flooding and road blocks, arrangements were made for the patient to be airlifted by helicopter to a nearby facility with cardiac stenting capabilities.
The time from diagnosis of the heart attack to treatment with balloon angioplasty - "door to balloon time" - fell just under 90 minutes. Even in the midst of the worst hurricane in American history, Meadowlands Hospital Medical Center was able to provide the patient with care consistent with national cardiac guidelines.
An accurate diagnosis, quick decision making, and excellent teamwork by Meadowlands Hospital staff resulted in another life saved!