Addressing a need for standardised best-practice training in an important cardiac procedure, MQ Health specialists offer first-of-its-kind training in right heart catheterisation using the University’s advanced simulation laboratory.

Right heart catheterisation (RHC) is considered the gold standard method for diagnosing pulmonary hypertension and is an essential evaluation for assessing breathless patients. RHC is also used to assess the severity of heart failure and direct haemodynamic effects of treatments.

A lack of sufficient and standard opportunities in training for advanced cardiology trainees in RHC, however, has led a Macquarie University Hospital specialist to design and offer a specialised training program in the procedure.

In June, cardiologist Associate Professor Martin Brown teamed up with colleague Associate Professor Eugene Kotlyar from St Vincent’s Hospital to deliver Australia’s first RHC seminar using Macquarie University’s simulation centre for clinical practice, located within the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.

The two specialists are both highly experienced in pulmonary hypertension and RHC, being recognised leaders in the field.

“We have designed the course to ensure that best practice and advanced techniques are taught in performing and interpreting RHC,” said Associate Professor Brown, principal investigator in multiple international clinical trials and co-founder of the Sydney Pulmonary Hypertension Specialists.

“To this end, the seminar provided both a didactic lecture to teach theory and a practical workshop during which participants performed RHC simulations on cadaver-like simulators with mocked real-time pressure monitoring.”

Participants learned clinical indications, best practice in advanced RHC techniques, management of complications and reporting on haemodynamics observed.

“We are delighted to have the seminar endorsed by the Advanced Training Committee in Cardiology at the Royal Australasian College of Physicians,” he added. “After completing the course, participants will hopefully be more confident and skilled in performing and interpreting RHC in their own patients.

“We are hoping to offer this course on a regular basis to address a current gap in training in this particular procedure.”