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Image-guided, minimally invasive medicine revolutionizes emergency care

SIR and Rep. Mia Love observe the International Day of Radiology with Capitol Hill briefing on interventional radiology’s role on trauma teams

WASHINGTON (Nov. 8, 2017)—Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR), in coordination with Rep. Mia Love, R-Utah, hosted a panel discussion today on the important role of interventional radiologists on trauma teams responding to mass casualty incidents.

In trauma situations, interventional radiologists are frequently called in to stop active bleeding without a single stitch. In the past these patients would be sent to surgery, but now, through an interventional radiology treatment called embolization, the IR physician stops the bleeding using the tiny incision and a thin catheter to deliver clotting agents to block the arteries. This procedure is often used to stabilize the patient so it is safe for a surgeon to go in and repair the damage caused by the trauma.

This procedure was performed on Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., after he was shot on June 14 while practicing for the congressional baseball game. He discussed his care during today’s briefing, which can be viewed on SIR’s Facebook page.

Joining Reps. Scalise and Love at the briefing were Matthew Mika, director of government relations at Tysons Food who was also shot on June 14; Rep. Scalise’s doctor, Arshad A. Khan, MD, FSIR, a senior IR at MedStar Washington Hospital Center; Mr. Mika’s doctor, Libby Schroeder, MD, FACS, a trauma surgeon at George Washington University Hospital; Saher S. Sabri, MD, FSIR, director of IR at MedStar Washington Hospital Center; and Susan E. Sedory, SIR executive director and panel moderator.

“Rep. Scalise is living proof that physicians like interventional radiologists are an essential part of our life-saving healthcare system,” said Rep. Love, who represents Utah’s 4th Congressional District. “With the growing shortage of graduate medical education residency slots across the nation, I am working to solve this issue so that we can fill the gap in the education of our needed health care providers.”

The panel also explored issues that limit access to adequate and timely trauma care, including training gaps in rural and underserved areas. Rep. Love has sponsored a bill, H.R.1167, the Enhancing Opportunities for Medical Doctors Act, to help fill that gap by expanding access to residency slots among rural programs, new medical schools and new primary medical specialties, like interventional radiology (IR).

“IR has a vital role to play on the trauma team, but many rural areas do not have access to any interventional radiology care, let alone the 24/7 IR care needed in a trauma center,” said Sedory. “That is why Rep. Love’s bill is so important. Through the reallocation of training slots to new and underserved areas, her bill would create more opportunities for patients to obtain access to critical and necessary care.”

The briefing was held as part of the International Day of Radiology, which commemorates the invention of the X-ray on Nov. 8, 1895. This year, the International Day of Radiology was focused on the role of radiology in emergency care, which includes image guidance and minimally invasive procedures pioneered by interventional radiologists. 

Media contact information

Elise Castelli
SIR Senior Manager, Communications and Public Relations
Phone: (703) 460-5572 

Watch now: SIR and Rep. Mia Love host panel on IR's role in trauma care

Read about "IR in the ER"

About SIR

The Society of Interventional Radiology is a nonprofit, professional medical society representing more than 7,000 practicing interventional radiology physicians, trainees, students, scientists and clinical associates, dedicated to improving patient care through the limitless potential of image-guided therapies. SIR’s members work in a variety of settings and at different professional levels—from medical students and residents to university faculty and private practice physicians.