A Gold Coast Private cardiologist has made a potentially life saving breakthrough in stroke prevention.
Associate Professor Ross Sharpe and sonographer, Assistant Professor Dan Traves, are the first in Australia to use contrast Trans Cranial Doppler Ultrasound (cTCD) to test if a patient has a Patent Foramen Ovale (PFO).
"cTCD is a better, cheaper, safer and quicker test to detect a PFO than the current standard procedure," said Dr Sharpe.
The journey from the Gold Coast to Moree takes more than 12 hours return by road, but for cardiologist Ross Sharpe the mercy trip is literally a flying visit.
The Gold Coast Private surgeon, who is also a pilot, captains his own light aircraft to the remote New South Wales town every month to provide lifesaving treatment to the rural community.
Since he began almost three years ago, Dr Sharpe and his cardiac technician, Matthew Morall, have voluntarily assessed around 1,300 patients, some of which have travelled up to six hours to visit the facility, from as far as Lightning Ridge and communities west of Goondiwindi.