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The Wisconsin Heart Hospital Announces Live Webcast Demonstrating Breakthrough Device to Facilitate Beating Heart and Robotic Coronary Revascularization Surgery

- Live webcast of surgical procedure to be held Thursday, January 17, at

2:00 p.m. Central Time -

MILWAUKEE, Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The Wisconsin Heart Hospital today announced that leading cardiothoracic surgeon Husam H. Balkhy, M.D., will webcast a live off-pump coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) procedure from The Wisconsin Heart Hospital. The approximately 75-minute live webcast will be available on on Thursday, January 17, at 2:00 p.m. Central Time. A replay will be available for 180 days following the live presentation for interested parties.

During the webcast, Husam H. Balkhy, M.D., Chairman of the Department of Cardiac & Vascular Surgery and head of the robotics program at The Wisconsin Heart Hospital, will perform a beating heart procedure using the C-Port xA(R) and C-Port(R) Flex A(TM) Distal Anastomosis Systems. Developed by Cardica, Inc. (Nasdaq: CRDC), the innovative C-Port anastomosis systems are designed to allow surgeons to automate the attachment of blood vessel grafts, replacing traditional hand-sewn with sutures. In addition to its use of the C-Port systems, The Wisconsin Heart Hospital recently acquired Intuitive Surgical's (Nasdaq: ISRG) da Vinci(R) S Surgical System, to continue to advance its leadership in minimally invasive surgery.

During the broadcast, Dr. Louis A. (Trey) Brunsting III, M.D., cardiothoracic surgeon at Centennial Medical Center in Nashville, will present video footage that shows a robotic closed-chest bypass procedure using the C-Port Flex A system in combination with the da Vinci(R) Surgical System. To date, Dr. Brunsting has performed several closed chest procedures using the Cardica device.

Moderating the live procedure will be Tung Cai, M.D., Medical Director and Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the Presbyterian Hospital of Denton. Dr Cai will present his published clinical patency data on the C-Port distal portfolio and review Dr. Balkhy's C-Port patency data from the November 2007 American Heart Association Scientific conference. This data was part of a study co-authored with Samuel Wann, M.D., Chair of the Department of Cardiac and Vascular Medicine at The Wisconsin Heart Hospital.

All three physicians will narrate during the procedure, explaining critical aspects of the surgery, and will answer viewers' e-mail questions submitted live during the event.

"This particular type of bypass is vital to the development of robotic, closed-chest bypass procedures, and therefore proving its efficacy in open-chest procedures is critical," said Dr. Balkhy.

According to Dr. Balkhy, "Cardica's C-Port systems represent a breakthrough in distal anastomotic devices that facilitate and simplify beating heart and robotic CABG procedures. These devices allow surgeons to offer patients less invasive cardiac surgery and may improve outcomes. This live webcast will provide surgeons with a convenient forum for an interactive exchange of questions, ideas and opinions about these revolutionary devices."

"The C-Port Flex A system has the potential to revolutionize the field of cardiothoracic surgery, as it may enable closed-chest, robot-assisted CABG procedures to be more reliably performed without the assistance of cardiopulmonary bypass and cardioplegic arrest of the heart," added Dr. Brunsting.

About The Wisconsin Heart Hospital

Located in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, The Wisconsin Heart Hospital, a member of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare, was the vision of a group of cardiac, vascular and specialty physicians who wanted to treat broad-based diseases that affect cardiac and vascular systems. They began with a unique premise -- they wanted to help shape the future of cardiovascular care through locating innovative workflow, patient care, diagnostics and imaging technologies under one roof.

The only cardiovascular specialty hospital and first accredited chest pain center in the Milwaukee area, the 60-bed hospital was designed for the complexities of heart and vascular care. Its services include diagnostic and interventional cardiac catheterization and peripheral vascular procedures, electrophysiology, surgical services, diagnostic imaging, emergency services and wellness and preventive medicine programs.

For more information about The Wisconsin Heart Hospital, its award-winning care and outstanding outcomes, log on to or contact Mary McIntosh at 414-778-7810.

SOURCE The Wisconsin Heart Hospital
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