EDINBURG, Texas (ValleyCentral) — DHR Health announced the first successful use of a life support method to save the life of a 57-year-old Edinburg woman.

On February 19, Maria Dalcour was rushed to a level one trauma center after suffering a massive heart attack resulting in her heart stopping.

First responders connected an Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) life support machine to Dalcour’s body in order to circulate her blood into the heart-lung machine, remove carbon dioxide, and send oxygen-filled blood back to the tissues in her body.

“It is the most sophisticated life-support technology in the world, and the device used at DHR Health is the same device used at the most prestigious academic centers in the world,” Dr. Andrew Phillips, Medical Director of the ECMO Program and Associate Medical Director of ICU at the DHR Health Level 1 Trauma Center said.

Dalcour was taken off the ECMO life support machine four days after she was admitted to the hospital and continues her recovery, a press release from DHR Health stated.

DHR Health is the first and only center in the Rio Grande Valley with a ECMO program including a complete team of ECMO specialists.

“The ECMO program is another example of how DHR Health is continuously delivering the latest technology to the area and addressing the emerging needs of our community,” Phillips said. “As the first and only established program within the region, we are giving patients a fighting chance never before had here.”