The Cardiology Department of Zhongshan Hospital affiliated to Fudan University is the most academically influential cardiology department among general hospitals in China. It is a key discipline under the Ministry of Education, a key national clinical priority and a leading specialty clinic of Shanghai medical field. It is also an “essential key” clinical medical center and one of the cardiovascular disease clinical quality control centers in Shanghai. The center boasts of an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, a member of the “one thousand talents project”, two Chang Jiang Scholars, two winners of the Outstanding Youths Award, and 51 professors and associate professors. It is one of the most influential clinical medical centers for cardiology in China.
History of the Department
The department was established in 1948. Professor Tao Shouqi, the famous cardiology expert, blazed a trail for the department, which was succeeded and carried forward by Professor Chen Haozhu, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, the famous specialists Zhu Junren, Pu Shouyue, Lin Youshan, Cai Naisheng and other prominent cardiologists. Since its foundation, it has always played a leading role in the treatment and academic researches in cardiology. As an authoritative institution for diagnosing and treating cardiovascular diseases, the department has succeeded many first attempts. The department established the first ECG service and echocardiography service in China, and for the first time, we introduced the interventional procedures in diagnosing and treating cardiovascular diseases and built labs for investigating heart disease caused by viral cardiomyopathy. In addition, we implanted the first “embedded” artificial pacemaker and launched the first elective coronary angiography. We were also the first to also set up a specialist clinic for myocarditis.
In 1980, the Institute of Cardiology, including the Cardiology Department, officially became a research and cooperative training center for WHO and the Ministry of Health;
In 1988, the State Commission of Education ratified the department as a key discipline;
In 1994, the department was approved as Shanghai’s key discipline of medical specialties. Also,in the same year, it was designated as a national pharmacology center for cardiovascular drugs;
In 1997, it was listed as one of the key disciplines in the “ 211 project”.
In 1998, it was ratified as Shanghai’s key discipline of advanced medical specialties for the second time;
In 2001, it was designated as Shanghai’s center for cardiovascular clinical medicine; and in the same year, the State Commission of Education approved it to be a key discipline on a national scale.
The department is a discipline among the top priorities of Fudan University’s 985 project.
The Department today
Under the leadership of Ge Junbo, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the discipline leader of the new generation, the Cardiology Department of Zhongshan Hospital has been vitalized and prospering. It is one of the most important clinical and research bases for diagnosing and treating cardiovascular diseases. It has attracted the most accomplished talents in cardiology and yielded some major technological achievements which have met the medical demands of the country. The researches of inflammatory cardiomyopathy, the intravascular ultrasound technology and the innovative coronary drug eluting stent won 2 awards in National Science and Technology Progress Awards and 1 award in National Award for Technological Inventions. The department has been groundbreaking in many respects: it is the first “green channel” for acute myocardial infarction patients in east China; it first utilized the technique of rotational atherectomy; the first percutaneous aortic valve replacement was operated in this department; and it first applied the China-made fully bioabsorbable stent. In 2015, the department moved to the new east hospital district. With the improved hospital environment and facilities, it has become one of the largest cardiology centers in a comprehensive medical institution in China.
1. Coronary Artery Disease
We are specialized in treating coronary artery disease, angina, myocardial infarction with interventional and medicinal treatments, and we closely follow the patients after interventional procedures and provide guidance. Our medical skills for treating coronary heart disease are in the national forefront. Ours is the first department to carry out rotational atherectomy in China and to open a “green channel” for acute myocardial infarction patients in east China. The department performs approximately 4,000 coronary interventions every year with a success rate of above 98 percent.
2. Cardiac Arrhythmia (cardiac electrophysiology, radiofrequency ablation and pacemaker)
In treating arrhythmia, such as atrial fibrillation, ventricular premature beats, ventricular tachycardia, and superventricular tachycardia, we use interventions and medicinal regimen. We place pacemakers in patients with cardiac conduction diseases such as sick sinus syndrome and atrioventricular block with follow-up advice and aftercare. The department exceeds most of their national counterparts in diagnosing and treating cardiac arrhythmia. Every year, with the assistance of sophisticated equipment such as Carto/ INSITE3000 three-dimensional mapping system and Pruka700 Electrophysiological multichannel recorder, the department performs cardiac electrophysiology and radiofrequency ablation surgeries on over 1500 patients with tachyarrhythmia, with high success rate and few complications. We implant more than 800 permanent pacemakers and over 100 ICD/CRTs, which rank the top in east China.
3. Structural Heart Diseases (congenital heart disease and valvular heart disease)
We treat atrial septal defect, ventricular septal defect, patent ductus arteriosus by closing the defects with transcatheter approach. We also treat complicated congenital heart diseases in adult patients with interventions. The department is also able to perform septum chemical ablation operation. As of now, we perform interventions in over 700 patients with structural heart disease annually, with the number and the medical skill ranking high in the country. In 2009, for the first time in China, we adopted interventional treatment for perivalvular leak. In the following year, Professor Ge Junbo accomplished the historical surgery of percutaneous aortic valve replacement, which was groundbreaking in the interventional treatment of aortic valve diseases in China.
4. Chronic Heart Failure, myocarditis and cardiomyopathy
We provide diagnosis, individualized treatment plan and guidance as well as follow-up service for patients with viral myocarditis, dilated cardiomyopathy and chronic heart failure. Our researches in myocarditis and cardiomyopathy won the second prize of the National Science and Technology Progress Award. We again led the national trend with our success rate in cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) and stem cell transplantations, which are the latest alternatives for treating chronic heart failure.
5. Pulmonary Hypertension
For patients with pulmonary hypertension, we provide right heart catheterization and targeted medical therapy. We also provide standard diagnosis and treatment for thrombosis-related diseases.
We provide hyperlipidemia patients with the service of early screening, treating guidance and monitoring.
7. Refractory Hypertension
We diagnose, treat and follow up various refractory hypertension cases.
8. Chronic Cardiovascular Diseases
Patients with chronic cardiovascular diseases or cardiovascular disease risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension and smoking habit can receive individual treatment options, health education and medical information in the department.
1. We perform endovascular imaging, intravascular ultrasound and optical coherence tomography, and we provide function estimation such as piezometry in the diagnosis and treatment of coronary artery disease.
2. We provide interventional therapy for complex coronary artery lesions such as chronic total occlusion, severe calcification, left main disease, bifurcation lesion and triple-vessel disease. We also strive to optimize the treatment strategies and innovate the technologies for these treatments.
3. The department provides interventional therapy for valvular heart disease. In 2010, it was at this department that the first percutaneous aortic valve replacement in China took place. In 2012, it succeeded in first performing percutaneous mitral valve repair. And in the following year, it performed percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation applying the VENUS-P auto-inflated valve system researched and developed independently by China.
4. We use automatic cardioversion defibrillator and biventricular synchronized pacing to prevent and treat paroxysmal ventricular tachyarrhythmia and wondering pacemaker. We also treat hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy with cardiac pacing.
5. The department provides genetic testing for the groups with high potentials for inherited heart diseases. We provide early diagnosis and intervention before the patients develop any pathological changes and malignant arrhythmia which may lead to sudden cardiac death.
The department has made a series of breakthroughs in intravascular ultrasound research and the research and development of the latest coronary stent, which has significantly innovated the clinical practice technology in treating coronary artery disease in China. We were the first internationally to point out the relationship between myocardial bridging and “half-moon phenomenon” and “finger phenomenon”, which led to the accuracy of close to 100% in diagnosing myocardial bridging. The finding also changed the earlier treatment method and its achievement has been included in textbooks for angiocardiopathy at home and abroad. Realizing the inherent defects, we developed a new type of stent with biodegradable coat which reduced the chance of potentially fatal blood clot from 1.2-1.9 percent to 0.34 percent, benefiting 80,000 patients with coronary artery disease. Internationally, it was the first entity to launch a randomized multicenter clinical study, which established the active role of cilostazol in preventing in-stent restenosis. In 2003, the TCT extolled the research as one of the top-ten groundbreaking researches of the year. In addition, it was the first in the world to adopt the retrograde wire crossing technique and the first in China to adopt selective coronary arteriography, to implant an artificial cardiac pacemaker, to perform percutaneous aortic valve replacement, percutaneous mitral valve repair and to research, develop and implant the fully bioabsorbable stent.
The research findings of the department has won 21 prizes on national and provincial scales, which includes 2 second prizes of the National Science and Technology Progress Award and 2 second prizes of the State Technological Invention Award. It also has been authorized 5 National patents. In the past 5 years, it has received 20 national and provincial research funds, published more than 400 papers, of which 115 were included in SCI, and edited and co-edited 11 books in total.
As the latest trend, cardiovascular diseases are surging in China. Responding to the challenging situation and based on former research, the department has made the following aspects the focus of its clinical research and translational studies.
One, the department will seek an optimal preventive modal for chronic cardiovascular diseases for the communities cooperating with the Heart Health Study Team in Shanghai.
Two, by taking advantage of our expertise in diagnosing and treating the cardiovascular diseases, we will team with the Cardiac Surgery Department to find better ways to treat some internationally challenging severe cardiovascular diseases.
Three, standing on the international academic frontier, our department will adopt the innovative technological achievements of using replacement therapy in patients with terminal cardiovascular diseases, further promoting cell therapy and related equipment and tissue replacement therapy.
Four, targeting the defects of the current coronary stents and based on the success of the biodegradable coating stent, we will launch the research and development for a functional coronary stent of the next generation.
Five, with its leading role in treating structural heart disease with interventional procedures, our department can make good use of its technological capacity and investigate the role of minimally invasive treatment in structural heart diseases, and therefore further advance the interventional technology for cardiovascular diseases.