Boca Raton Regional Hospital First In State To Use New Technology To Map Irregular Heart Rhythms Non-Invasively

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Staff report

Boca Raton Regional Hospital is the first in Florida and one of only five centers nationally to non-invasively map irregular heartbeats in patients with chronic atrial fibrillation and other arrhythmias who have not responded adequately to medication or prior ablation procedures.

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is a quivering or irregular heartbeat that can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure or other heart-related complications. A total of 2.7 to 6.1 million Americans are living with the condition.

The Medtronic CardioInsightNoninvasive 3D Mapping System, introduced at Boca Regional by Murray Rosenbaum, MD, Director of Electrophysiology at the Hospital’s Christine E. Lynn Heart & Vascular Institute and was first used in February on an 84-year-old patient.

The system uses a 252-electrode sensor vest that is worn by the patient to match body surface electrical data with heart anatomy. The non-invasive technology creates 3D electro-anatomic maps of the heart by collecting electrocardiogram (ECG) signals from the chest, and combining these signals with data from a computed tomography (CT) scan of the heart. The vest technology contours to the patient’s body and allows for continuous and simultaneous panoramic mapping of both atria or both ventricles non-invasively prior to the procedure. The 3D maps can be created by capturing a single heartbeat and enable rapid mapping of these heart rhythms.

“This non-invasive mapping system has streamlined the clinical planning process for specialists like myself and has made it easy for patients to receive exquisite mapping results right at the bedside,” Dr. Rosenbaum said. “The technology allows mapping of certain arrhythmias with high accuracy prior to entering the cath lab so that the entire procedure can be planned before touching the patient.”

The most important role, Dr. Rosenbaum said, is the fact that this technology offers a chance to rid atrial fibrillation when no other treatment is effective. This includes cases where initial ablation has failed, or in cases of persistent or chronic atrial fibrillation.

CardioInsight has the ability to locate with great precision what are called cardiac rotors. These points in the heart’s electrical system are analogous to the eye of a hurricane; around which electrical activity called initiating spirals rotate causing the arrhythmia. Using this new mapping technology, the electrophysiologist can position an ablation catheter on the rotor centers. In some cases a single ablation can terminate the atrial fibrillation and restore the heart to normal rhythm.