Ministry Saint Clare's Hospital

Ministry Saint Clare's Hospital in Weston is continuing the long tradition of high quality patient care that the Marshfield Clinic and Ministry Health Care heart care program has become known for. Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital exceeds national quality standards and according to state records, heart surgery patients at Ministry Saint Clare’s pay less than patients at the other Wausau hospital. It should come as no surprise, since the heart program at Ministry Saint Clare’s is built upon the same resources and protocols as Ministry Saint Joseph’s Hospital in Marshfield.

Our cardiac surgeons use the most advanced procedures in open heart surgery, including off-pump techniques and extensive use of internal mammary artery grafting, which contribute to our exceptional patient outcomes.

Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital is also an advanced care center for the Rescue1 program, a life-saving system of rapid transfer and treatment of heart attack patients from across Central and Northern Wisconsin.

You may schedule an appointment to consult with a heart care specialist by calling 800-888-4755.


Ministry Saint Clare's Hospital was the first chest pain center in the region to earn this national accreditation in 2007 and was recertified in 2010 and 2013.  Click here to learn more.







Cardiac Procedures

The following procedures are often used in the evaluation and treatment of cardiovascular disease. Consult your physician or heart care professional for more specific information.

Cardiac Procedures for Abnormal Heart Rhythms

Catheter Ablation
This procedure uses radio waves to silence an abnormal area in the heart electrical system, which is usually found during an electrophysiology study.

Permanent Pacemaker
A permanent pacemaker is inserted into the patient's heart and upper chest to provide a reliable heartbeat when the heart's own rhythm is too fast, too slow, or irregular. A permanent pacemaker is usually inserted while the patient is in the electrophysiology lab.

Internal Cardioverter Defibrillator
A defibrillator is inserted into the patient's heart and chest to send out a small amount of electricity when needed to jolt heart rhythm back to normal.

Cardiac Procedures for Heart Disease

Coronary Angioplasty
With this procedure, a catheter is used to create a bigger opening in the vessel to increase blood flow. Although angioplasty is performed in other blood vessels, Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty (PTCA) refers to angioplasty in the coronary arteries to permit more blood flow into the heart. There are several types of PTCA procedures, including:

  • balloon angioplasty
  • atherectomy
  • laser angioplasty
  • coronary artery stent
  • rotoblator
  • TEC catheter

Open Heart Surgery
Open-heart surgery is performed on the heart while the bloodstream is diverted through a heart-lung machine. The surgery includes heart valve replacements, coronary artery graft (CABG) surgeries, heart transplants and "other open-heart procedures."

Coronary Artery Bypass Grafts (CABG)
A surgical procedure in which small portions of veins or arteries are taken from one part of the body and transplanted into the heart to bypass clogged coronary arteries in the heart.

Valve Replacement
In this surgical procedure, a mechanical or tissue valve is transplanted into the heart to replace the damaged valve.


Transmyocardial Revascularization (TMR)
The procedure, called Transmyocardial Revascularization, or TMR, uses laser surgery to create small holes directly into the heart muscle to relieve chest pain. Angina occurs when blood vessels, which bring blood to the heart muscle, are clogged or damaged. When this happens, the heart muscle doesn't get the oxygen it needs and patients feel pain, called angina, in their chest, neck, jaw or shoulders. This pain can often severely limit their physical activity and ability to do the things they want to do. The procedure takes about 90 minutes, and involves a small incision on the left side of the chest. A bypass machine is not needed, and blood thinners are not used during TMR. For certain patients needing bypass surgery, TMR can be used in areas of the heart where bypasses cannot be placed. This can improve the results of the surgery.


Valvuloplasty is a procedure in which a catheter with a large balloon is used to open a heart valve that has become narrowed usually as the result of scarring. The catheter is guided through the aorta to the valve, and once in place within the leaflets, the balloon is inflated until the leaflets are loosened. The balloon is then deflated and withdrawn from the body.

Cardiac Rehabilitation in Weston/Wausau

Cardiac rehabilitation is a physician-supervised program for people who have either congenital or acquired heart disease. Program participants may or may not have had a heart attack or heart surgery (or other heart procedures). Cardiac rehabilitation can often improve functional capacity, reduce symptoms, and create a sense of well-being for patients. A physician may prescribe cardiac rehabilitation for a patient in certain situations.

Conditions or cardiac procedures that may necessitate cardiac rehabilitation may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • congestive heart failure
  • angina pectoris
  • myocardial infarction
  • post-open heart surgery
  • post-heart transplantation
  • balloon angioplasty
  • pacemaker
  • congenital heart disease
  • arrhythmias
  • rheumatic heart disease

Cardiac rehabilitation programs can be conducted while a person is a hospital inpatient or on an outpatient basis. Many skilled professionals are part of the cardiac rehabilitation team, including any/all of the following:

  • cardiologist / cardiovascular surgeon
  • physiatrist
  • internist
  • rehabilitation nurse
  • dietitian
  • physical therapist
  • occupational therapist
  • speech / language therapist
  • psychologist / psychiatrist
  • recreational therapist
  • audiologist
  • chaplain
  • vocational therapist

A cardiac rehabilitation program is designed to meet the needs of the individual patient, depending upon the specific heart problem or disease, and should be supervised by a cardiac physician and a team of cardiac professionals. The goal of cardiac rehabilitation is to help patients reverse their symptoms and maximize cardiac function. Cardiac rehabilitation includes, but is not limited to:

  • develop an exercise program
  • be knowledgeable about their risk factors
  • learn about their heart condition
  • be prepared for recovery at home
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