Interventional Cardiology

Mission Lifeline

The Interventional Cardiology Fellowship at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill is a one-year ACGME-accredited training program under the supervision of George A. Stouffer, MD, FACC, FSCAI (Director) and Prashant Kaul, MD, FACC, FSCAI (Associate Director).

The C.V. Richardson Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill is a state of the art facility. The laboratory was completely renovated and fully refurbished in 2012 with the latest Philips Allura Xper FD20 and FD10 systems. The center is a high volume, regional referral center with the distinction of receiving the AHA Mission: Lifeline initiative’s Gold Performance Achievement Award for excellence in STEMI care.

The primary objective of the fellowship is to train fellows to become safe and fully independent interventional cardiologists with a deep appreciation of the literature supporting interventional practice and the data underpinning current guidelines. The program is structured to give graded autonomy to the trainee commensurate with their level of training with a significant emphasis on performing the procedure as the primary operator. The expectation is that the interventional fellow will be capable of performing a coronary intervention independently (with direct supervision as required) within the first 6 months.

Cath Lab

Interventional fellows will easily exceed the ACCF COCATS training minimum of 250 PCI procedures and will typically perform at least 300 to 350 coronary interventions as primary operator during the 12-month period. All fellows will be eligible for the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Interventional Cardiology Board examination. There has been a 100% pass rate amongst graduates from the program to date.

At the end of the 12-month training, Interventional Fellows will be comfortable independently performing the following procedures:

  • Primary PCI
  • Aspiration Thrombectomy
  • Radial diagnostic and interventional cases (including STEMI)
  • FFR, IVUS, OCT
  • LV Support Device insertion including Impella and IABP
  • Distal embolic protection devices
  • Rotablator Atherectomy
  • Laser Atherectomy
  • Complex PCI including CTO, LM, Bifurcation
  • Vascular Closure Devices: Perclose, Angioseal, Mynx

In addition to gaining expertise in complex coronary interventions, fellows will gain significant experience in peripheral and structural interventions.  Fellows typically meet competency requirements for diagnostic and interventional peripheral procedures and will become proficient in the percutaneous treatment of peripheral arterial disease as well as the use of orbital and laser atherectomy and novel access techniques in the following vascular territories:

  • Subclavian
  • Renal
  • Iliac
  • Superficial Femoral
  • Below the knee run-off

There will also be opportunities for fellows to perform the following structural interventions:

  • ASD, PFO and VSD closures
  • Mitral and Aortic Balloon Valvuloplasty
  • Percutaneous therapies for congenital heart disease

Trans-catheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) is performed at Rex Hospital (UNC Health Care) in Raleigh. It is anticipated that interventional fellows will participate in the procedure at Rex Hospital in the near future.

Didactic Conferences

Interventional Cardiology Case Conference (Mondays, 4 pm)

A review of interesting cases with specific emphasis on interventional aspects and techniques.

Interventional Boards Core Curriculum (Tuesdays, 7 am)

A core didactic lecture series directly following the ABIM Interventional Cardiology Board examination syllabus with a review of board style questions with each session.

Diagnostic & Hemodynamic Review (Wednesdays, 7 am)

A review of interesting diagnostic and hemodynamic cases from the previous week.

Quarterly Regional Interventional Case Conference

A regional conference organized by UNC with participation from all the major teaching institutions in the greater triangle area, providing an opportunity for interventional fellows to present interesting cases at a regional level and learn from valuable discussion with other interventionalists.