Dale Michels Center for Heart Care

Advancing Local Heart Care

What is Aortic Stenosis?  What are the symptoms?  Where do you go for treatment?  Watch this short informational video and learn more about the TAVR procedure available locally at St. Agnes Hospital, Dale Michels Center for Heart Care.

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)

TAVR is a proven, minimally-invasive surgical option for patients who’ve been diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis to replace their diseased aortic heart valve.  Unlike traditional open chest surgeries to replace a heart valve, TAVR usually requires a small puncture in the groin. This procedure enables the placement of a heart valve into the body with a tube-based delivery system (catheter).

Most patients will leave the hospital the next day or within a few days and can resume all normal activities shortly after.

TAVR is suitable for patients with symptomatic severe aortic stenosis.   Typical symptoms include shortness of breath or chest pains. It is offered to all patients as an alternative to open heart surgery.  A specialized heart team will discuss the best treatment option based on your overall health.

Delores Kraus, 82, of Fond du Lac, was the first patient to undergo a transcatheter aortic valve replacement, also known as a TAVR, at the Dale Michels Center for Heart Care,St. Agnes Hospital in 2019. Read about her experience here.


The Dale Michels Center for Heart Care at Agnesian HealthCare is now offering one of the latest procedures to help patients with atrial fibrillation (AFib) management. The FDA-approved WATCHMAN procedure is designed to help a specific group of AFib patients who are poor long-term candidates for oral anticoagulation by implanting a stent-like device into the left atrial appendage via a catheter-based approach. The WATCHMAN procedure reduced the risk of stroke and can offer the benefit of eliminating anticoagulation medications. The first WATCHMAN procedure was done at St. Agnes Hospital 2019.

Read Donald Wackett's Watchman testimonial.

Watch this short video.  Ask your cardiologist if you are a candidate for WATCHMAN.


Now Providing Minimally-Invasive Heart Rhythm Treatment.

Newest addition to the Dale Michels Center for Heart Care: the ‘Hybrid Lab

  • Specialized environment as part of a fully-functioning operating room.
  • Fluoroscopy, plus ultrasound and 3D mapping - all at one time - to guide surgery in real time with extreme proficiency.
  • State-of-the-art X-ray equipment to ensure lowest possible radiation dose delivery for patient and staff safety.
  • Monitoring station for team members’ viewing allowing constant presence with patient.
  • Minimally-invasive procedures for irregular heart rhythms, like A fib.
  • Quick response time with in-room anesthesia equipment.
  • Ultimate design for patient safety

Comprehensive heart care services, offered through our Dale Michels Center for Heart Care, bring a diverse and complete package of cardiac procedures to our region, close to home. 

We Are Ready

During your time of emergency, our skilled and caring heart team is ready to care for you with the most advanced technology available. Our emergency departments serve as your first line of defense with advanced equipment and instruments to monitor cardiac conditions and vital signs. 

Along with monitoring devices to measure heart and pulmonary functions, and head and artery pressure levels, the intensive care units at St. Agnes Hospital, Ripon Medical Center and Waupun Memorial Hospital offer a caring and proficient staff ACLS-certified and CPR-trained. Our board-certified intensivists are available 24 hours a day at St. Agnes Hospital to closely follow a patient's care after open-heart surgery. 

Additional services and resources:

  • Cardiac catheterization/vascular laboratory
  • Cardiac rehabilitation
    • Full scope of rehabilitation services offered in Fond du Lac, Ripon and Waupun to help heart patients make the complete transition to a health lifestyle. Education is offered to incorporate healthy lifestyle changes.
  • Pulmonology rehabilitation
  • Electrocardiographic services
    • Cardiac stress testing
    • Electrocardiograms (ECGs)
    • Holter monitoring and event recorders
  • Medical imaging and diagnostic procedures
    • Providing highly accurate views of a patient's heart and arterial system through nuclear medicine or ultrasound procedures.
  • Open-heart surgery
    • On-site surgical specialization offered for patients who have blockage in order to regain blood flow to the heart.
  • Pacemaker Clinic
    • Located at St. Agnes Hospital, our clinic allows patients to check vital pacemaker functions. With just one phone call, heart rhythms are transmitted directly to the Pacemaker Clinic for analysis. Any abnormality in rhythm is followed up by a member of our expertly skilled staff.
  • Stent placements 

We Value Preventive Medicine

Today, more and more people realize the value of healthy living. Paying attention to your body now can mean fewer medical problems down the road. We offer educational programs through our Health Resource Center, including heart-healthy living and heart care. We also extend our educational resources to special health fairs and other events designed to help prevent illness and injury.



Cardiac Campaign


Watchman Team

Agnesian Heart Care: We Are Ready

Agnesian HealthCare - Live Heart Healthy

Agnesian HealthCare: #heartstories

Agnesian HealthCare #heartstories

During your time of emergency, our skilled and caring heart team is ready to care for you with the most advanced technology available. Our emergency departments serve as your first line of defense with advanced equipment and instruments to monitor cardiac conditions and vital signs.