UNM Hospital
UNM Hospital

Cardiovascular disease is the No. 1 cause of death in the United States, but early detection can help patients beat the odds.

UNM Hospital’s Cardiac Ultrasound Laboratory recently received three national certifications for echocardiography (ECHO) procedures that provide early detection and more precise diagnosis of life-threatening heart disorders and diseases. 

The certifications, granted by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission, recertified UNM’s adult stress echocardiography and adult transthoracic testing programs. UNM also received accreditation for adult trans-esophageal echocardiography, a diagnostic test that uses an ultrasound device placed into a patient’s esophagus to provide physicians a clearer image of parts of the heart.

These professional accreditations require rigorous proficiency and documentation of all facets of a service or process, said Kirsten Tolstrup, MD, medical director of the UNM Hospital Heart Station and Echolab and an associate professor in the UNM School of Medicine.

“Every detail, every aspect of providing good care is reviewed during the accreditation process,” she said.

“This is where the future of medicine is going,” Tolstrup added. “You have to demonstrate beneficial outcomes and high-quality care for patients.”

The UNM Hospital ECHO lab provides some of the most specialized testing in New Mexico, with more than 9,000 procedures performed last year.For more information about UNM Hospital ECHO Lab, visit the website.