Advanced technology in electrophysiology gives new lease of life to 32 year old
Often have we heard the saying that technology has done wonders in this era, and this holds true even in healthcare sector. 32-year old patient, Mr. K R Choudhury suffering from a near fatal condition called WPW (Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome, a short circuit of the heart) has got a new lease of life at Fortis Hospitals, Bengaluru with advanced technology in the area of electrophysiology using Workmate Claris and Ampere RF generator.
Mr Choudhury did not pay attention to the frequent episodes of rapid heart palpitations that he was experiencing since the last two years. In January 2013, he experienced a severe bout of palpitations and his heart rate was between 250-300 (average bpm being 72-100). His family members thought that he had acidity and administered local remedies. He felt very weak and almost lost consciousness. It was then he consulted a family doctor, who did an ECG test and referred him to Fortis. Investigations revealed that he was suffering from a condition called WPW along with atrial fibrillation (an irregular heart rhythm) that can be extremely dangerous and even fatal if not treated on time.
Electrophysiologists (doctors trained in the treatment of electrical circuits of the heart) at the hospital had used the Workmate Claris and Ampere RF generator to conduct Cardiac Ablation after doing the electrophysiology study, a procedure that destroys these short-circuits to restore normal rhythm on Mr Choudhury. “This is a new generation radio frequency generator that we have used for the first time in South Asia. This system provides fibre optic cable technology in EP system, which gives clean, crisp signals by eliminating noise from the equipment in the cath lab. This helps the electrophysiologists to perform cases with high level of confidence and accuracy. Our EP lab is the most advanced and well-equipped to deal with any complex cases’ said Dr Jayakeerthi Y Rao, Consultant Cardiologist and Electro-physiologist, Fortis Hospitals.
Catheters (narrow, flexible tubes) are inserted into a blood vessel, often through a site in the groin (upper thigh) or neck, and guided through the vein until they reach the heart. Small electrodes on the tip of the catheters stimulate and record the heart’s activity. This test, called an electrophysiology study, allows the doctor to pinpoint the exact location of the short circuit. Once the location is confirmed, the short circuit is destroyed or blocked (to prevent it from sending faulty signals to the rest of the heart). This is done by sending energy through the catheters which generates heat at the tip to destroy a small amount of tissue at the site of contact.
Success rate of this procedure is above 95%. In patients with incessant tachycardia, ablation could prevent heart failure and like in this scenario it could prevent syncope and cardiac arrest. Mr. Choudhury has completely recovered from his symptoms and is leading a normal life, further added Dr Jayakeerthi.