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Mercy doctor offers new expertise, including improved care for dialysis patients not available elsewhere in Oregon.

The newest member of the Mercy Shaw Heart and Vascular Center medical staff offers a unique set of skills and state-of-the-art techniques that promise to help improve the quality of life for many local patients on dialysis,with arterial diseases and many other conditions.

Dr. Charles McGlade is a specialist in interventional radiology, a minimally invasive technique used in the diagnosis and treatment of a range of conditions, including end-stage kidney disease, heart disease, cancer and PAD(peripheral artery disease).

After caring for patients in the Eugene area for nearly 30 years, Dr.McGlade is now bringing his special expertise to patients in the Umpqua Valley to expand the already considerable capabilities of the Shaw Heart team.

“We’re providing care and performing some techniques at Shaw Heart that aren’t even available in Eugene,” Dr. McGlade says. “That’s because I was the one doing them up there, and now I’m doing them here.”

Among those benefiting from his presence will be patients on dialysis. That’s because of a new procedure that represents a vast improvement in care and is available nowhere else in Oregon and at only one other site on the West Coast.

Dr. McGlade calls the new advancement “the first significant breakthrough in dialysis care in decades.”

Called the “Ellipsys Vascular Access System,” it’s an improved method of creating what is known as a percutaneous arteriovenous fistula (pAVF)for patients needing dialysis, Dr. McGlade explains.

“Hemodialysis requires access to the patient’s bloodstream, which is often created by establishing a permanent connection between an artery and a vein in the arm known as a fistula,” Dr. McGlade says. “Traditionally, fistulas are created during an open surgical procedure by suturing an artery and vein together. This new system instead uses a small needle puncture, instead of surgery, and a catheter to accomplish the same connection.”

Dr. McGlade says the new procedure is quicker to perform than the traditional method, far less invasive, more cost effective and results in greater patient comfort and better cosmetic outcomes.

“I think this will be a great asset that will significantly improve the quality of life for patients needing dialysis,” he says.

Dr. McGlade’s expertise in interventional radiology expands Shaw Heart’s capabilities in other areas as well. This includes a new procedure that uses shock waves to clear heavily calcified blood vessels similar to the way another procedure called lithotripsy has been used for many years to break up kidney stones.

The specialist’s expertise in this area is such that he was recently asked to lead a videoconference explaining the procedure to colleagues around the country.

Dr. McGlade’s use of interventional techniques provide often dramatic results for patients who might otherwise require surgery or, in the instance of patients with peripheral artery disease, even amputation.

“I’m very excited about the potential of these and other procedures we are performing to improve the quality of life for many people in this region and beyond,” Dr. McGlade says. “Any time we can save a patient from having to leave the community for care it’s of great benefit to them and their families.”