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Published on October 16, 2014

Mercy Medical Center offers new treatment for severe asthma

Bronchial Thermoplasty is available at Mercy Pulmonology Clinic, offered by the area’s only board-certified interventional pulmonologist

Dr. Celis performing a Bronchial ThermoplastyMercy Pulmonology Clinic is offering a new, FDA-approved treatment for severe asthma aimed at improving a patient’s quality of life and providing long-lasting asthma control. 

Mercy acquired the Bronchial Thermoplasty (BT) technology by the Alair™ System earlier this year and is now treating patients. BT is a safe outpatient procedure for the treatment of severe asthma in adult patients 18 years and older whose asthma is not well controlled with inhaled or other medications.

The procedure uses mild heat to reduce the amount of excess smooth muscle tissue in the airways. Less muscle tissue means less airway constriction during an asthma attack. BT is performed in three sessions, typically scheduled several weeks apart. The first session treats the airways in the right lower lobe of the lungs, the second treats the airways in the left lower lobe and the third procedure treats the airways in both upper lobes of the lungs. Each session is performed under moderate sedation or general anesthesia and typically takes less than an hour to complete. No incision is needed.

At Mercy, the procedure is administered by Dr. Eduardo Celis, the only board-certified interventional pulmonologist in the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City area. Dr. Celis is certified in pulmonary and critical care medicine and has trained in bronchial thermoplasty for the past two years as part of a clinical trial at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI. He now offers the procedure to patients at Mercy.  

Asthma is one of the nation’s most common and costly diseases with more than 20 million asthma sufferers.

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