Magnetically Guided Catheter Ablation
What is it?
Atrial fibrillation is the most common type of cardiac arrhythmia and is caused by the conduction of irregular impulses to the ventricles, which generate the heartbeat. This causes the upper chambers of the heart (atria) to quiver (fibrillate). Magnetically guided catheter ablation is a minimally invasive procedure that can treat atrial fibrillation using a technique that exposes the patient to less radiation than traditional catheter treatments.
The procedure is completed in an electrophysiology laboratory equipped with advanced imaging equipment. Light sedation is given and a local anesthetic is used to numb the catheter insertion site - usually the groin, neck or arm. A softer, specially designed catheter that is gentler on the heart than a standard catheter is guided through the blood vessels leading to the heart by two computer-controlled magnets, one on each side of the body. Pivoting magnets are used to pull the catheter in the desired direction, allowing electrophysiologists to guide the tube exactly where it needs to go within the heart, with millimeter accuracy. The abnormal heart tissue causing the condition is then destroyed (ablated).
The Loyola difference
Loyola is the first hospital in the Chicago area to treat cardiac rhythm disorders using this state-of-the-art technology. Our heart rhythm disorders program serves as a major regional and national referral center for the treatment of atrial fibrillation, offering treatment options often unavailable elsewhere. Our skilled team of leading electrophysiologists, advanced practice nurses, technical staff, imaging experts and other professionals provide an integrated approach to the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of rhythm disturbances and their associated underlying conditions.
Loyola is a nationally recognized leader in cardiac care. U.S. News & World Report ranked us 18th in the nation for cardiology and heart surgery in 2012, making this our 10th year in the top 50.
Learn more about our performance outcomes.