Methodist Hospital Stone Oak held a Sept. 1 ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of its new Complex Coronary Intervention Center, a hospital-based clinic specialized in highly complex procedures related to treating coronary artery disease.

According to a news release, these procedures help with improving the quality of life for patients suffering from various conditions associated with cardiovascular disease.

Methodist Hospital Stone Oak officials said the new clinic’s focus includes chronic total occlusion, or CTO, a procedure performed when a patient has a complete or nearly complete blockage of one or more of their coronary arteries.

The release states that blockages are caused by plaque and cholesterol deposit buildup within a coronary artery, which causes narrowing of the arteries. When this happens, blood and oxygen flow to the heart is compromised and can raise the risk of heart attack.

The CTO procedure lets physicians insert tiny wires, or catheters, into the body through a vessel, typically near the groin or wrist. This enables interventional cardiologists to approach and open the blockages. This minimally invasive procedure is an alternative therapy for patients that do not qualify for open heart surgery, according to Methodist Hospital Stone Oak officials.

“This dedicated space will allow for new and advanced techniques in treating complex cardiovascular diseases,” said Dr. Hinh Keith Nguyen, medical director of the CCIC and CTO. “The CTO procedure gives patients hope, when they may have none, and helps to improve their overall quality of life.”