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Breakthrough CardioHealth® Station Cleared By FDA to Take Center Stage at the Annual Scientific Sessions of the American College of Cardiology 2011

HOUSTON, March 30, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- CardioNexus Corporation ( an affiliated company of Panasonic Healthcare Co. Ltd., will introduce Panasonic CardioHealth® Station at the 2011 Annual Scientific Sessions of the American College of Cardiology. The device, which has just received clearance from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, is an automated and portable cardiovascular imaging device which aims to complement traditional blood pressure and cholesterol measurement in physicians' offices and to help detect the hidden risk of heart attack and stroke.

The FDA decision allows Houston-based CardioNexus to sell the CardioHealth® Station for use not only in hospitals and community clinics, but also in cardiologist, internist and family physician offices, as well as in retail healthcare clinics.

The device, which relies on Panasonic's advanced, high-resolution, real-time, ultrasound technology, measures the thickness of the arterial wall through the skin quickly and reproducibly. It is considered a major advancement in the automation of medical technologies which enable physicians, their assistants, and nurse practitioners who are not specialized in ultrasound imaging to use the device and detect High Risk patients.

"The CardioHealth® report which combines Framingham Risk Score with carotid IMT and plaque assessment provides a more accurate assessment of a patient's risk than measuring blood pressure and cholesterol alone," says Dr. Morteza Naghavi, President and CEO of CardioNexus Corporation.  "It takes us beyond the status quo and empowers internists and primary care physicians to use noninvasive imaging in their office."

According to a 2010 study based on the American Heart Association's "Get With The Guidelines" initiative, only 23% of 136,905 patients hospitalized with coronary artery disease had high LDL, or "bad cholesterol" levels while 77% were reported to have normal LDL levels and therefore would not have been identified as High Risk.

The noninvasive imaging feature of CardioHealth® Station represents a breakthrough introduction into the primary healthcare market by the collaborative effort of CardioNexus and Panasonic Healthcare since their partnership was announced last October.  Other features, such as Point-of-Care genetic testing for monitoring response to drug therapies, which collectively aim at Personalized Preventive Medicine will be introduced in the future.

"We've already seen tremendous interest in the technology, particularly among internists and primary care physicians who up until now have not had an automated non-invasive imaging technology in their office," says Steven Lynum, Director of Panasonic Healthcare's Clinical Products who is also an Executive Vice President at CardioNexus. "CardioHealth® Station allows them to easily incorporate atherosclerosis imaging in their management of cardiovascular patients based on the recent guidelines."

The CardioHealth Station includes a handheld ultrasound probe to scan the carotid arteries on both sides of the neck and to detect hidden plaque build up and increased thickness in the artery wall. Testing is performed in a matter of minutes without pain, discomfort or exposure to radiation; and the results are available immediately.

According to the American Heart Association there are over 60 million Americans at risk of a heart attack and in need of screening and preventive care.

"We are proud that Houston's CardioNexus in partnership with the world's largest consumer electronics manufacture, Panasonic Corporation, is introducing breakthrough medical technologies," said Leo Womack, a well known Houston life science investor who chairs CardioNexus' Board of Directors. "Texas needs more of these CardioNexus type initiatives."

For details and to view a demonstration video, visit

About CardioNexus Corporation

CardioNexus Corporation is an affiliated company of Panasonic Healthcare dedicated to reducing cardiovascular disease through early detection and prevention. CardioNexus' flagship product, the CardioHealth® Station, is a new multi-modality initiative to advance cardiovascular health assessment for the prevention of heart attack and stroke. The advanced, automated features of the CardioHealth® Station enable physicians, especially primary care physicians and internists, to perform atherosclerosis imaging and cardiovascular risk assessment in their offices, without need for outside referral.

About Panasonic

Based in Secaucus, NJ, Panasonic Corporation of North America provides a broad line of digital and other electronics products for consumer, business and industrial use. The company is the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC), and the hub of Panasonic's U.S. branding, marketing, sales, service and R&D operations. Panasonic Corporation of North America's newly formed Healthcare Group brings together Panasonic's expertise in a wide range of health and medical device technologies, including hearing care. For more information visit Additional Panasonic information for journalists is available at  

About Panasonic Healthcare Co., Ltd.

Panasonic Healthcare Co., Ltd., headquartered in Matsuyama, Japan, is an internal  division company of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC) that specializes in the development and manufacture of healthcare products, including blood glucose monitoring systems, ultrasound diagnostic systems and hearing instruments. Founded in 1948, the company has been developing cutting-edge technologies in in-vitro diagnostic systems, medical imaging, hearing solutions, medical instruments and hospital systems to provide value-added solutions to healthcare professionals and patients. The previous corporate name was Panasonic Shikoku Electronics Co., Ltd., which was changed to the current Panasonic Healthcare Co., Ltd. on October 1, 2010.

SOURCE CardioNexus Corporation
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