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Winter 2011

‘Tis the season to reflect upon another year as it comes to a close. And what a busy, wonderful year it has been!

2011 marked the fifth anniversary of Cleveland Clinic in Canada. This is an important milestone not only for our organization but also for our patients and their families, who with our help have dramatically improved their health and overall quality of life. We are also thrilled that more and more individuals are taking a proactive approach to their health and are embracing our model of care – a model based on creating an environment where the patient is at the centre of a multidisciplinary healthcare team. We customize our care to address each patient’s medical history, lifestyle and goals, and we empower all of our patients with information and tools that can help them modify their behaviours and live healthier lives.

We would like to thank our patients, client partners, talented staff and the clinical community for their support throughout the past five years, and we look forward to continuing to work together to improve the health of Canadians. This holiday season, our clinic is making a donation to Make-A-Wish Canada in your honour.

The Cleveland Clinic family wishes you and your loved ones a happy and healthy 2012!


Cleveland Clinic Unveils Top 10 Medical Innovations for 2012

From wearable bionic devices to a concussion management system for athletes, Cleveland Clinic’s Top 10 Medical Innovations for 2012 is a showcase of new techniques, therapies and approaches to treating a host of medical conditions. The list of breakthrough devices and therapies was compiled by a panel of Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists and unveiled during Cleveland Clinic’s 2011 Medical Innovation Summit.

The Top 10 Medical Innovations for 2012:

  1. Catheter-Based Renal Denervation to Control Resistant Hypertension: Today, one in three adult Americans has hypertension, which puts them at significant risk for strokes, heart attacks and kidney failure. In fact, hypertension is the No. 1 risk factor for death in the world. Now, a new 40-minute catheterization procedure, called renal denervation, is approaching resistant hypertension in a new way – by targeting the renal sympathetic system, which consists of the small nerves that carry signals between the brain to the kidneys. Disruption of these nerve fibers has resulted in improved blood pressure levels, while also showing promise in treating chronic kidney disease, insulin resistance, and heart failure.
  2. CT Scans for Early Detection of Lung Cancer: With the introduction of low-radiation-dose spiral computed tomography (spiral CT), a high-tech scan can generate a series of detailed cross-sectional images of the lungs that are used to create a three-dimensional image. These scans can not only identify tumors earlier, but also spot them when the tumors are smaller and more treatable by surgery. Surgery is the best treatment for most types of lung cancer.
  3. Concussion Management System for Athletes: Head injuries are now such a major medical concern in sports that special patient management tools have been developed. Used by athletes, they instantly detect brain injuries at the moment of contact, and provide patient-specific guidance about when athletes can return to play without risk of further harm. The novel Concussion Management System includes a special assessment tool that is used to establish an athlete’s baseline cognitive and motor skills at the beginning of his or her athletic season. This is the first tool that objectively and accurately assesses cognitive and motor function simultaneously.
  4. Medical Apps for Mobile Devices: Medical apps have several significant advantages: reliable medical information is always up to date, doctors can answer patient queries quickly by accessing data without every leaving the patient’s bedside, and many medical apps also have interactive features that help doctors choose appropriate screening tests for patients and calculate a patient’s risk of developing a host of diseases.
  5. Increasing Discovery with Next-Generation Gene Sequencing: The best way to get to the root cause of serious illness is to sequence a person’s genome. Leading geneticists envision a day soon when everyone’s genome will be sequenced and included as a routine part of their medical records. Next-generation sequencing machines can help achieve this goal in the near future with the wider dissemination of faster and affordable sequencing machines.
  6. Implantable Device to Treat Complex Brain Aneurysms: A new minimally-invasive procedure can safely and effectively treat brain aneurysms without open surgery by implanting an FDA-approved device directly into the artery. Consisting of a flexible braided mesh tube made of platinum and nickel-cobalt chromium alloy, this device can be delivered by catheter and used to block off large, giant, or wide-necked aneurysms in the damaged internal carotid artery.
  7. Active Bionic Prosthesis: Wearable Robotic Devices: About 9 out of 10 amputations involve the leg, from the foot to above the knee. Thanks to remarkable advances in prosthetics research in the last decade, space-age plastics and carbon-fiber composites have been engineered to help restore function. Now comes the computerized bionic leg with its microprocessors and computer chips that can rival the functionality provided by biological limbs.
  8. Harnessing Big Data to Improve Heath Care: Health care data requires advanced technologies to efficiently process it in reasonable time, so organizations can create, collect, search, and share data, while still ensuring privacy. In this way, analytics can be applied to better hospital operations and tracking outcomes for clinical and surgical procedures. It can also be used to benchmark effectiveness-to-cost models.
  9. Novel Diabetes Therapy: SGLT2 Inhibitors: There are many diabetes medications; most work by affecting the supply or use of insulin, which helps move glucose into the cells. But now there is a new class of drugs ready for prime time called sodium-glucose co-transporter 2 protein inhibitors, or SGLT2 inhibitors. These drugs represent a paradigm shift in diabetes treatment because they reduce blood sugar in a totally new way – by causing it to be excreted during urination.
  10. Genetically Modified Mosquitoes to Reduce Disease Threat: Researchers are now exploring new avenues to fight mosquitoes, starting in the laboratory where scientists manipulate the DNA of the insects.

Four major criteria served as the basis for qualifying and selecting the Top 10 Medical Innovations. Nominated innovations were required to:

  • Have significant potential for short-term clinical impact (either a major improvement in patient benefit or an improved function that enhances healthcare delivery)
  • Have a high probability of success
  • Be on the market or close to being introduced
  • Have sufficient data available to support its nomination

Working with Mount Sinai to Improve Patient Care

We are happy to announce that we are now working with Mount Sinai Hospital, one of Canada’s top academic health science centres. This relationship has been built on a shared goal of delivering the highest level of quality patient care. Starting in January, Mount Sinai Hospital will provide all of our lab medicine services using their rigorous quality assurance standards.


Massage Therapy is Coming to Cleveland Clinic Canada

In January, massage therapy will now be available at Cleveland Clinic Canada. In addition to relieving stress and enhance well-being, massage therapy can be an effective treatment for a range of muscle and joint injuries. Trained massage therapists know how to manipulate the muscles, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and joints to alleviate pain and stimulate healing.

Research shows that massage therapy can help reduce pain, decrease autoimmune illnesses and enhance immune function. Specifically, massage therapy can:

  • Increase range of motion and flexibility
  • Increase blood and lymph function
  • Help people respond to and better tolerate medical procedures and other related therapies
  • Reduce pain, depression, stress and anxiety related to illness
  • Reduce muscle tension or soreness, and help restore muscle tone lost through long-term bed rest, stress and anxiety

To book an appointment, please contact our Sports Health team at 416.507.6717


Change Your Thinking and Improve Your Fitness

In October, Paul Van Wiechen, our Director of Exercise Physiology, began a bi-weekly column, “The Educated Exerciser” in the National Post. This column is intended to help Canadians think differently about exercise and its many benefits.


Food Friend or Food Foe?

In a two-part series, Jennifer Sygo, registered dietitian and our Director of Nutrition, helps National Post readers identify foods that are often underestimated and could be a part of a healthy diet.


Holiday Recipes without the Guilt

Cleveland Clinic dietitians have created healthy and tasty recipes for you to enjoy with your family and friends this holiday season.