Massachusetts General Hospital

VasCore, at the Masssachusetts Hospital in Boston, MA, will serve as the Vascular Ultrasound Core Laboratory for the C-TRACT Trial. The Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) is a 898-bed world-renowned medical center that offers sophisticated diagnostic and therapeutic care in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine and surgery. Each year, the MGH admits approximately 45,000 inpatients and handles almost 1.5 million visits in its extensive outpatient programs at the main campus and at its four health centers in Back Bay, Charlestown, Chelsea, and Revere. Its emergency services handle over 76,000 visits annually. The MGH conducts the largest hospital-based research program in the United States, with an annual research budget of nearly $463 million. It is the oldest and largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, and nearly all of the hospital’s active staff physicians are on the Harvard Medical School faculty.

The Vascular Ultrasound Core Laboratory (VasCore), established in 1999, is a freestanding, independently functioning unit within the MGH system. VasCore specializes in providing independent ultrasound reading services for clinical trials, and has worked together with the NHLBI and many major pharmaceutical firms and device manufacturers on clinical studies. VasCore has been involved in over 30 clinical trials (about 20 are currently active) involving clinical research sites throughout the world including North America, Europe, and Australia. This includes the NIH-sponsored ATTRACT Trial. Specifically, VasCore has participated in the evaluation of device technologies for the carotid, renal, iliac, and lower extremity arteries; abdominal aortic aneurysms, vascular access closure, brachytherapy, and venous valve technology. Vascore is staffed by an administrative director, an office administrator, a technical director, and 3 full-time ultrasound readers who are jointly certified as registered nurses (RN degree) and registered vascular technologists (RVT degree).

In C-TRACT, VasCore will provide instruction on venous Duplex ultrasonography; contribute its ultrasound expertise to the study design; credential the Clinical Center sonographers; develop the ultrasound-related parts of the Manual of Procedures; and ensure quality control of the ultrasound assessments.