An Overview Of Ablation Atrial Fibrillation

By Alley Benton
Updated February 1, 2017
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An Overview Of Ablation Atrial FibrillationIf you have the symptoms associated with atrial fibrillation, including a rapid heart rate, heart palpitations, or an irregular heartbeat, you may be a candidate for catheter ablation. It is important, however, that you have an overview of ablation atrial fibrillation before you agree to have the procedure completed. This empowers you with the knowledge you require to make an informed decision.

Presenting an Overview of Ablation Atrial Fibrillation:

In most cases, catheter ablations will not be offered as the first treatment option for someone with atrial fibrillation. The Heart Rhythm Society (HRS) released their Expert Consensus Statement, in which they recommended that the procedure should only be offered to those who have atrial fibrillation and do not respond to any conventional medication, or who cannot tolerate that medication. The HRS is a renowned medical association of which arrhythmia specialists are members.

In an overview of ablation atrial fibrillation, the HRS did recommend the procedure to those people who have a reduced ejection fraction, or heart failure. Additionally, it may sometimes be recommended for athletes who are diagnosed with atrial fibrillation. However, no clinical decision should be based on a patient's desire to stop taking anticoagulant medication like dabigatran (Pradaxa) or warfarin (Coumadin).

Practically speaking, ablation atrial fibrillation patients tend to be younger than 80 and have a normally sized left atrium. In some cases, if an enlarged left atrium is found, the physician must first check atrial volume in the left atrium during a regular cycle, and must determine whether it works normally. For those who have left ventricular dysfunction or high volume, they may still be suitable candidates for catheter ablation, but they will have lower success rates.

If you are having atrial fibrillation episodes, then you must seek treatment as soon as possible, particularly if you have been prescribed anti-arrhymthmic medication. This is because the disease is progressive and, if left untreated, you are likely to develop chronic, longstanding atrial fibrillation. The more advanced the condition is, the harder it is to cure as well.

When the condition first develops, it tends to focus specifically on the region of the pulmonary vein. In fact, in around 90% of people who have developed paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, they find that their condition starts in the pulmonary vein. Most people who have paroxysmal atrial fibrillation find that they can be cured of their condition through ablation of the region of the pulmonary vein. However, it is possible that they will require multiple catheter ablation procedures.

The condition is curable, in other words, and if it is left untreated, it will generally start to create new entry points and pathways in other parts of the heart. If this happens, the focus is away from the region of the pulmonary vein. If this continues, atrial remodeling (changes in the heart's tissue) can appear. Because of atrial remodeling, catheter ablation would generally be much less successful and not a suitable option for those who have persistent, longstanding atrial fibrillation. Physicians feel that, if treated early, longstanding fibrillation can be avoided.

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This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional.