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Novel Ablation Technology Treats Cardiac Arrhythmias

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 31 Jul 2014
Image: The FlexAbility ablation catheter (Photo courtesy of St. Jude Medical).
Image: The FlexAbility ablation catheter (Photo courtesy of St. Jude Medical).
A new ablation catheter with an irrigated flexible tip is designed to reduce risk factors associated with the delivery of cardiac ablation therapy.

The FlexAbility ablation catheter is based on flexible catheter tip technology that reduces the rate of complications associated with ablation procedures through its ability to bend and conform to the cardiac anatomy, thus decreasing the amount of pressure distributed to a patient’s heart wall while simultaneously increasing the stability of therapy delivery, and providing optimal irrigation flow over the entire tip for improved cooling. A unique handle and shaft allow for improved maneuverability, enabling electrophysiologists to reach challenging anatomic locations within their patients.

FlexAbility ablation catheter data is displayed on the EnSite Velocity System, a cardiac mapping and navigation system. Once the catheter is inserted in the cardiac chamber, the EnSite system records electrical information from the heart and displays it in a three-dimensional (3D) anatomical model. The highly detailed anatomical models enable physicians to diagnose and guide treatment for abnormal heart rhythms. The FlexAbility ablation catheter and EnSite Velocity System are products of St. Jude Medical (St. Paul, MN, USA), and have received the European Community CE marking of approval.

“The goal of the FlexAbility catheter was to bring the most advanced irrigated ablation solution to the electrophysiology market,” said Eric Fain, MD, group president at St. Jude Medical. “Because we worked with industry thought leaders throughout the development of this technology, we are confident that its completely redesigned handle and shaft, along with its unique flexible tip, will become a leading ablation technology that addresses the broad needs of electrophysiologists across the wide spectrum of patient anatomies.”

“The FlexAbility catheter brings technical and functional advancements to the electrophysiology lab through its unique catheter tip and excellent handling capabilities,” said Andrea Natale, MD, who performed the first European case at IdealMed Unidade Hospitalar de Coimbra (Portugal). “The catheter tip allows for effective lesion formation with potentially fewer risks, representing an important option for electrophysiologists that are looking to broaden their ability to treat arrhythmias with increased confidence.”

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