HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Dr. James Stone and his wife, Dr. Danielle Stone, are cardiologist that practice at the Harlingen Medical Center.

The couple is offering a new procedure that treats small blood clots in the lungs.

The procedure, pulmonary embolectomy, is for cardiac patients who cannot be prescribed blood clot treatment medication.  

The doctors say the procedure is done using an aspiration catheter system, a suction that removes debris from the lungs.

They say the procedure is quick and effective.  

“Before this, it was usually just using clot-busting medications, it would infuse in there or anticoagulants like heparin. Those have been the standard of care forever,” James Stone said. 

The procedure allows patients with pulmonary embolism, a blockage in the lung’s arteries, a quick treatment instead of traditional medication like heparin.

Heparin is a medication that prevents blood clots from becoming larger.

James Stone says the treatment has already helped a young patient treat her pulmonary embolism.

“She was very sick to where even if she got up and walked a few feet her oxygen would drop,” James Stone said. “We went in there and with this catheter pulled out everything, quarter sides clots. the next day she was off oxygen and discharged the following day.”

Danielle Stone says the procedure only takes 45 minutes and involves a shorter hospital stay and minimal long-term complications.

Both doctors say the procedure is available and it is safe.