Telestroke Program | Loyola Medicine & Palos Health
Monday, May 21, 2018

Loyola Medicine, Palos Health Telestroke Program Saves Patient's Life

telestroke
 
MAYWOOD, IL – Chris Scholten was sitting on the couch with his wife Crystal when he felt something pop in the back of his head.
 
His blood pressure spiked, he began throwing up and talking like a child. At age 30, he was having an unusual type of stroke.
 
An ambulance took Mr. Scholten to Palos Community Hospital in Palos Heights, Illinois, a member of Loyola Medicine's telestroke network. Palos physicians ordered tests and virtually consulted with Michael Schneck, MD, a Loyola neurologist who specializes in stroke care.
 
At many hospitals, stroke specialists aren't always available. Loyola stroke specialists are on call 24/7 to examine patients remotely and recommend treatments. At the patient's bedside, a microphone and full-color, high-definition camera enable the Loyola specialist to see, hear and talk to the patient and the patient's family, doctors and nurses. The specialist also can examine lab results, CT scans and other images sent over a secure internet connection.
 
Mr. Scholten was experiencing a stroke in the back of the brain, called the cerebellum. On Dr. Schneck's recommendation, he was brought to Loyola University Medical Center, where he underwent brain surgery by neurosurgeon G. Alexander Jones, MD.
 
"The long-term recovery from cerebellar strokes is usually really good," Dr. Jones said. "But in the short term, the stroke causes pressure on the brain stem that can be life-threatening."
 
To relieve the pressure, Dr. Jones performed a procedure called a craniectomy. The surgery, along with other treatments and rehabilitation, enabled Mr. Scholten to make a full recovery.
 
"This is a story of teamwork," Dr. Schneck said. "Teamwork between Loyola and Palos. Teamwork between neurology and neurosurgery. Teamwork among doctors, nurses and therapists. And, most importantly, [the teamwork of] Chris and his wife."
 
Mrs. Scholten said she is "beyond grateful" for the care. She also credits her husband. "Chris is here today because of his motivation and determination," Mrs. Scholten said. "He is a fighter, and he will never give up."
 
The telestroke program is among the patient-care initiatives of the innovative affiliation between Loyola and Palos, which focuses on coordinated and collaborative patient care. Palos patients receive greater access to Loyola’s renowned specialty care services, such as neurosciences and oncology, while having continued access to Palos’ primary care network.
 
Loyola is among the leaders in the Midwest in telemedicine care and one of few hospitals nationwide to provide specialized stroke care 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The program was created by nationally recognized experts in telemedicine—doctors with years of experience in direct bedside applications of the technology.
 
Loyola's stroke center is certified by the Joint Commission as a comprehensive stroke center. The center includes a nationally recognized team of experts in every facet of stroke-related care, including neurology, neurosurgery, neuroradiology, emergency medicine, rehabilitative services, social work, pharmacy and specialized neuroscience nursing.
 
For nine years in a row, Loyola has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines® - Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes Loyola's commitment to providing the most appropriate stroke treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.
 

About Loyola Medicine and Trinity Health

Loyola Medicine, a member of Trinity Health, is a quaternary care system based in the western suburbs of Chicago that includes Loyola University Medical Center (LUMC), Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, MacNeal Hospital and convenient locations offering primary and specialty care services from 1,877 physicians throughout Cook, Will and DuPage counties. LUMC is a 547-licensed-bed hospital in Maywood that includes the William G. and Mary A. Ryan Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine, the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, a Level 1 trauma center, Illinois's largest burn center, a certified comprehensive stroke center and a children’s hospital. Having delivered compassionate care for over 50 years, Loyola also trains the next generation of caregivers through its teaching affiliation with Loyola University Chicago’s Stritch School of Medicine and Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. Gottlieb is a 247-licensed-bed community hospital in Melrose Park with 150 physician offices, an adult day care program, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park. MacNeal Hospital is a 374-bed teaching hospital in Berwyn with advanced inpatient and outpatient medical, surgical and psychiatric services, advanced diagnostics and treatments. MacNeal has a 12-bed acute rehabilitation unit, a 25-bed inpatient skilled nursing facility, and a 68-bed behavioral health program and community clinics. MacNeal has provided quality, patient-centered care to the near west suburbs since 1919.

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic healthcare systems in the nation, serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states. Trinity Health includes 92 hospitals, as well as 109 continuing care locations that include PACE programs, senior living facilities and home care and hospice services. Its continuing care programs provide nearly 2.5 million visits annually. Based in Livonia, Mich., and with annual operating revenues of $18.3 billion and assets of $26.2 billion, the organization returns $1.1 billion to its communities annually in the form of charity care and other community benefit programs. Trinity employs about 129,000 colleagues, including 7,800 employed physicians and clinicians. Committed to those who are poor and underserved in its communities, Trinity is known for its focus on the country's aging population. As a single, unified ministry, the organization is the innovator of Senior Emergency Departments, the largest not-for-profit provider of home health care services—ranked by number of visits—in the nation, as well as the nation’s leading provider of PACE (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly) based on the number of available programs.