Cardiac centre opens in Soweto

Soweto residents can now access world-class cardiac care in their community without travelling to the city or suburbs.

The first private hospital in Soweto launched its new cardiac centre last week after receiving a licence to operate from the department of health.

Dr Themba Maluleke is one of four cardiologists at Dr SK Matseke Memorial Hospital in Diepkloof.

He has been performing interventional procedures such as angiograms in the new hybrid cathlab centre. Angiograms can detect if a patient is going to have a heart attack.

"Angiograms are the majority of procedures done because they can pick up if a patient's arteries are blocked," he said.

In this procedure, the doctor uses a catheter and pipes to enter a vein through the groin or wrist to travel into the heart where its arteries will be viewed.

Maluleke said SA was seeing more heart-related cases in recent years, particularly in black communities, with it being one of the leading causes of death.

"Young people and black people are having extensive heart issues now," he said. "From drug use and effects of HIV we are even seeing 21-year-olds with heart problems."

Maluleke, who has been working as a cardiologist for three years, said a typical patient would be in their 50s, a smoker, diabetic, hypertensive and with a family history of heart disease.

However, he said, heart patients show different signs of heart disease.

"Each patient is unique and has their own challenges."

Yesterday, saw a third angiogram performed in the new theatre.

Hospital manager Kgolo Matseke, whose family owns the Clinix Health Group, said he has been privileged to be able to work for the community that his family came from.

"It is overwhelming. It is an absolute privilege to be a part of this and an easy decision to come back to our community that brought us up," Matseke said.

The hospital recently underwent a R250m upgrade which includes the hybrid cathlab centre.

The centre has cutting-edge technology such as an image guiding therapy platform and world-class X-rays for the heart.

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