New Treatment for Persistent AFib

Oklahoma Heart Hospital now offers a new treatment option for patients with persistent atrial fibrillation (AFib). In fall 2020, the FDA approved the Thermocool Smarttouch Catheter for use in AFib patients. This new treatment offers better long-term results for those with persistent atrial fibrillation.

Atrial fibrillation is a common arrhythmia, especially among older people. In patients with AFib, the upper chambers of the heart (the atria) do not beat regularly and are inefficient at pumping blood. This causes blood to pool in the heart, which increases the risk of the pooled blood clotting and causing a stroke. Patients with atrial fibrillation often report symptoms such as heart palpitations, shortness of breath, fatigue, dizziness, and lightheadedness. 

The good news is that atrial fibrillation is a very treatable condition. There are many types of AFib, and the recommended treatment can change based on each patient’s history, including their age, how long they’ve had an abnormal heartbeat, and any other health conditions they have. Treatment options may include blood thinners to reduce the risk of stroke and antiarrhythmic medications, electrical cardioversion, or catheter ablation to restore a normal heartbeat.

The newly approved technology has been found particularly beneficial for those with persistent atrial fibrillation, which is defined as AFib that occurs for longer than a week but generally less than a year. The Thermocool Smarttouch Catheter is used during a catheter ablation procedure. The tip has a new sensor that is used to confirm the optimal amount of pressure is being used while correcting the electrical pathways. The technology combines with the company’s current software to provide a tailored, safe, and highly effective solution for those with persistent AFib. 

If you have persistent AFib, contact your Oklahoma Heart Hospital physician to find out more information about the Thermocool Smarttouch Catheter.