Several New Surgical Services Benefit Patients at Covenant Medical Center

In 2022, Covenant Medical Center, in partnership with Covenant Medical Group, added several new surgical services to enhance patient care.

When it comes to lung cancer detection, patients now have the option for a safer and minimally invasive biopsy. With Ion technology, physicians can perform robotic assisted bronchoscopy with an ultra-thin catheter, reaching all 18 segments of the lungs.

This biopsy can help physicians determine if a nodule or lump is benign or cancerous. With early detection, survival rates of lung cancer are about 50-60% higher than cancers detected at an advanced stage.

“Ion robotic bronchoscopy provides us a new way to safely sample suspicious lesions at an earlier stage,” Covenant Medical Group Pulmonologist and Critical Care Specialist Dr. Brian Williams said. “It’s precision, stability, and small diameter allows us to reach areas of the lungs that previously we have not been able to access. This minimally invasive approach, helps us provide an accurate diagnosis with the least amount of risk to the patient.”

Ion procedures started at CMC in September.

Aquablation therapy is a new process/procedure our Covenant Medical Group urologists use when treating Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). BPH is when the prostate is enlarged, but non-cancerous, causing a blockage of the urinary tract, sometimes resulting in bladder, urinary tract, and kidney infection.

It is estimated around 40 million men in the U.S. suffer from BPH and the condition is the number one reason men visit a urologist.

Aquablation is an image-guided system that allows the surgeon to map the areas of the prostate that need to be resected using a heat-free water jet to precisely remove the excess prostate tissue without damaging the remaining tissue.

“Aquablation is the newest treatment modality for an enlarged prostate,” Covenant Medical Group Urologist Dr. Ryan Owen said. “We are optimistic that by using this new technology we will be able to more completely treat symptoms in a minimally invasive method. The goal is to alleviate symptoms and have patients return home the same day of surgery. So far it has delivered.”

Aquablation procedures started at CMC in June.

Covenant Medical Group is also upgrading its Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine at CMC. The machine, a 1.5T, is now the most advanced of its kind in the region. The upgrade makes for clearer imaging and faster imaging time, allowing us to treat more patients each day.

The upgrade allows for motion-correction and free-breathing exams, meaning patients don’t have to lie incredibly still or hold their breath during the procedure.

In addition to 3-dimmensional MRI imaging of the head, neck, spine, and torso, upper and lower extremities can now also be imaged.

Finally, in 2022, Covenant Medical Group cardiologists at CMC started inserting permanent heart implants to help reduce the risk of stroke in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. Blood thinner medication is typically the treatment for those with atrial fibrillation. While effective, blood thinners can have some significant side effects. By using the WATCHMAN FLX Left Atrial Appendage Closure (LAAC) device is an alternative to blood thinner medication, patients still see a significant reduction in their risk of stroke, without the side effects that come along with medication.

Watchman procedures started at CMC in early 2022.

Covenant Health is your home for unmatched excellence, providing a connected health network with access to the care you deserve, opening the door to everything you need for lifelong health.

About Covenant Health:
As a faith-based health care system, it is Covenant Health’s vision to create Health for a Better World. As the Best Hospital in the Panhandle Plains region as voted by U.S. News and World Report, Covenant Health has consistently provided exceptional health care to West Texas, and eastern New Mexico for more than 100 years. Our clinically integrated health network of eight hospitals, and more than 6,000 caregivers allows us to provide our patients with better access to care using more innovative technology and procedures, while focusing on new age approaches to health care like education and preventative medicine. To learn more about Covenant Health, please visit or our Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter, pages.

More about: