Atrial Fibrillation Program
Atrial fibrillation (A-FIB) is the most common arrhythmia, affecting almost three million Americans today. At the Maimonides Heart & Vascular Center in Brooklyn, NY, your physician will work to discover potentially reversible causes for your atrial fibrillation. Frequently, an echocardiogram is performed to look for abnormalities that may be contributing to your arrhythmia.
Initial atrial fibrillation treatment usually includes medication to slow your heart and prevent the arrhythmia from returning. Many patients also require an anticoagulant (blood thinner), and some may require an electrical cardioversion to return the heart to normal rhythm. More advanced treatment options include atrial fibrillation surgery.
Hybrid A-FIB Ablation Procedure
Another series of innovative A-FIB treatment options has been established for patients with A-FIB. One groundbreaking approach is to treat or "ablate" the inside of the heart's chambers with radio-frequency, and/or ablate the outside of the heart, in order to rewire the heart's electrical system. At Maimonides, both forms of ablation are performed in the Hybrid A-FIB Ablation Procedure, with Electrophysiologists (cardiologists specializing in the electrical activity of the heart), and Cardiac Surgeons working together.
Requiring a small incision below the breastbone, the electrophysiologist and the cardiac surgeon ablate areas on the inside and outside of the heart, applying the most comprehensive approach with the lowest risk possible to cure A-FIB and restore a regular heart rhythm.
In fact, Maimonides was among the first hospitals in the nation to provide this groundbreaking treatment, and it continues to be the only hospital in Brooklyn to offer a comprehensive program performing the Hybrid A-FIB Ablation Procedure under one anesthesia, as the electrophysiologist and cardiac surgeon work together.
Since adopting this approach to treat atrial fibrillation in 2012, the A-FIB team at Maimonides has pioneered performing the highest volume of hybrid A-FIB procedures in the tri-state area, currently at 110 (April 2017), with quality outcomes—85% of patients were at Normal Sinus Rhythm (NSR) at their one-year follow-up appointment. Our patients receive long-term follow-up once a year.
Performed in our sophisticated Hybrid Operating Suite, the Hybrid A-FIB Ablation Procedure results in a hospital stay of only 48-72 hours and a fast recovery time for our patients.
Additionally, patients who undergo this procedure can also have a clip device placed outside the left atrial appendage (a small pouch in the heart) to close it and prevent blood clots from circulating—decreasing the risk of stroke and eliminating the use of blood thinning medications such as Warfarin.