Making medical history at Southside Hospital
Southside Hospital’s Dr. Robert Kalimi (left) and Dr. Lawrence Ong (right) with Phil Piazza (center), the first patient in the Northeast to receive Abbott’s Investigational Tendyne Transcatheter Mitral Valve Replacement.

Courtesy photo

Making medical history at Southside Hospital


BAY SHORE—Southside Hospital recently made medical history in the Northeast. 

For the first time ever in the region, surgeons in Bay Shore were able replace a leaky heart valve without open-heart surgery. Phil Piazza, a Nassau County resident, received the implant as part of a clinical trial for the Abbott’s Investigational Tendyne Transcatheter Mitral Valve Replacement system. 

A leaky mitral valve, or mitral regurgitation, according to officials, results in blood flowing backwards and leaking into the left atrium of the heart when the heart is contracting, leading to heart failure. One way that this life-threatening situation was alleviated before this clinical trial was through open-heart surgery to repair or replace the mitral valve. 

Abbott’s Investigational Tendyne system replaces the leaky valve without open-heart surgery to correct the issue, officials said, adding that the minimally invasive device is the first that can be repositioned and fully retrieved, allowing more precise implantation and helping improve patient outcomes. 

“We are excited to partner with Abbott on this opportunity to offer patients an innovative therapy for severe mitral regurgitation as an alternative to more invasive open-heart surgery,” said Lawrence Ong, MD, chair of cardiology at Southside Hospital and member of the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in Manhasset. 

Robert Kalimi, MD, vice chair of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery at Southside Hospital and Feinstein Institute member, is the principal investigator leading the team alongside Dr. Ong. “It’s great to see that our first patient is doing so well after this procedure and was able to avoid having open-heart surgery to fix his mitral regurgitation,” Dr. Kalimi said. 

According to officials, it was Northwell Health cardiologist William Breen, MD, that referred the patient to Dr. Kalimi.

This clinical trial, called SUMMIT, is expected to enroll more than 1,000 patients at 80 sites throughout the United States, Canada and the European Union to evaluate if treatment with the Tendyne TMVR system is safe and effective for patients suffering from severe MR. 

Southside Hospital asks anyone wishing to participate in the clinical trial to contact Christina Brennan, MD, vice president of clinical research at Northwell Health, at or 631-968-3016. 

~ Compiled by Anthony Perrotta