Ablation is a procedure when the heart part, causing arrhythmia, is affected with an electric current (radiofrequency ablation, RFA) or extreme cold (cryoablation).
Method of implementation
The intervention is carried out in an X-ray operating room under the supervision of a special X-ray installation. Under local anesthesia special heart catheter electrodes are led into the patient’s body and guided to the heart for electrical pulses transition, and the doctor is watching this process on a monitor. The first step is for the arrhythmologist is to define the zone of arrhythmia occurrence and its mechanism. The effectiveness of further treatment depends a lot on this study accuracy.
In our center, during the catheter ablation, we use a modern angiograph by Philips company. It builds a three-dimensional map of the heart, and allows determining precisely the arrhythmogenic part and leading the catheter into it. During the study signals from the inner surface of the heart are recorded and put into the computer. The patients are conscious; they can talk to the doctor and comment on their feelings when provoking arrhythmia tests are conducted. After finding the source of the arrhythmia, the doctor affects it with radio-frequency energy. The electrode on the end of the catheter is heated and destroys the small area of heart tissue in which pathological path passes. In this place the scar is formed, which does not conduct electrical impulses – and the arrhythmia is eliminated as a result.
In the case of cryoablation instead of an electric pulse, the myocardium is exposure to cold. Nitrous oxide, which serves as a cold source, is led in a special balloon catheter. Cryotechnology is a promising direction in cardiology, conducted with the least risk, and has many advantages.