Barbara Colella and her cardiologist, Dr. Haroon Faraz, have a lot to smile about today. 

Barbara was one of the first patients in New Jersey to undergo an exciting, new treatment for coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in both men and women. 

Known as Shockwave intravascular lithotripsy, the procedure opens clogged arteries that are especially difficult to unblock due to hard calcium deposits or twists in the arteries.  Shockwave is offered at both Hackensack University Medical Center and Jersey Shore University Medical.

“This is life-saving,” said Faraz, who is an interventional cardiology specialist with Hackensack University Medical Center. Faraz explained it is based on the same technology used to destroy kidney stones so they can more easily pass through the urinary tract.  

The minimally invasive procedure uses a wave of sonic pressure, to break up the calcium buildup in the blood vessel allowing for the use of a stent to hold the artery open. Doctors typically have to use a small drill. 

"I am so happy to be one of the first patients to benefit from this exciting tool. I was home the next day and I feel great,” said Barbara.