The Marqués de Valdecilla University Hospital is the first in Spain to successfully apply a novel systemfor the non-invasive treatment of atrial fibrillation (AF), the most common cardiac arrhythmia in clinical practice, caused by a problem in the electrical system of the heart and one of the main causes of morbidity and mortality.
It is, as explained by the section head of the Arrhythmia Unit, Juan José Olalla, of a one-use vest with 252 electrodes that, in a non-invasive way, analyzes the electrical signals of the heart and is capable, through a mathematical model patented and tested, to define a three-dimensional map of the propagation and origin of the electrical impulse moving through the cardiac surface.
This revolutionary system, “not only analyzes these signals, but is able to define how they propagate and determine the elements that allow their perpetuation.”
The electrical information of the heart obtained with this analysis is crossed with the anatomy data of the patient defined in a TAC made with the vest itself on the day of the procedure, Olalla said, establishing the “targets” to treat atrial fibrillation in a manner more effective and effective “.
Similar tests had been carried out in other hospitals but it has not been until now when the process has been successful.
This system is a “big step” in the treatment of patients with persistent atrial fibrillation of a few months of evolution in which “the perpetuating element of their arrhythmia can be established anatomically and destroyed with radiofrequency guided by a non-invasive system”.
“It is a spectacular advance towards the definitive control
of an epidemic that in the western world will affect 20% of the population if
it survives to 90 years and that after the 60 is very prevalent,” said
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Atrial fibrillation manifests itself with an irregular heart rhythm and, often, very fast. It can cause symptoms such as heart palpitations, fatigue and shortness of breath, and increases the risk of death, congestive heart failure and embolic phenomena, including stroke.
Hence the importance of treating fibrillation that has a very negative impact on the quality of life of the patient and can cause serious health problems.