Advanced Heart Care
November 5, 2011
Heart patients can now get more advanced care in Johnston County.
For the past year, Dr. Kevin Campbell of Wake Heart & Vascular has been doing pacemaker and defibrillator implants in the heart catheterization lab at Johnston Medical Center in Smithfield.
He is now offering electrophysiology studies and a new therapy to correct abnormal heart rhythms. For its part, Johnston Health has bought equipment and trained the staff to assist with the new procedures.
“With EP studies, we’re able to analyze the normal God-given conduction system of the heart,” he says. “We can watch the electrical activity, compare it to standards and determine whether or not it’s normal.”
During the study, the electrophysiologist inserts an electrical catheter through a blood vessel in the leg. Using X-ray, he guides the catheter to the heart and positions electrodes in key locations so that he can see how the heart is working electrically. He’s then able to diagnose abnormal heart rhythms, select and administer a drug regimen, and then see, in real time, if the therapy produces the desired results.
“I’m able to prove what I think the problem is and what it’s not,” he says. “EP studies also help me determine whether someone needs a pacemaker or a defibrillator.”
In addition, Campbell will begin performing radiofrequency ablation. During the procedure, he uses radiofrequencies to heat up the tip of a catheter and then burns away tissue causing abnormal heart rhythms.
Campbell says few community hospitals offer EP studies, and he praised Johnston Health administrators, medical staff and catheterization lab employees for embracing the new service. He says it was his partner, Dr. Eric Janis, a local cardiologist, who saw the need for new therapies for heart patients and began talking with him about bringing his specialty to Johnston County.
“Everything is so appreciated here, and I like that this advanced level of care can have such a high impact on patients,” he adds.
Chuck Elliott, president and CEO of Johnston Health, says he’s pleased that the hospital is able to offer more services to heart patients. “We’re thrilled to be working with Dr. Campbell, who has exceptional skills. He has been a wonderful addition to our medical staff.”
Campbell grew up in Raleigh and is a graduate of Athens Drive High School. He was valedictorian of his class at N.C. State University in 1992. And he was ranked third in his class at Wake Forest University’s Bowman Gray School of Medicine in 1996.
After graduating from medical school, Campbell did an internship and residency in internal medicine at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. He completed a two-year fellowship in cardiology and a two-year advanced fellowship in electrophysiology at Duke University Medical Center. He has been with Wake Heart and Vascular for eight years.
He is board certified in internal medicine, cardiology and cardiac electrophysiology.
Campbell is married to Deborah Fisher, a gastroenterologist at Duke University, and they have a 10-year-old daughter Rebecca.
About Johnston Health
Johnston Health is the county’s health care system. It includes Johnston Medical Center-Smithfield, a 179-bed acute care hospital, and Johnston Medical Center-Clayton, an outpatient campus that includes a freestanding emergency department, same-day surgery and diagnostic imaging departments. Johnston Health also has primary care practices in Clayton and Kenly and an urgent care in Smithfield.