An FDA advisory panel voted that the overall benefits outweighed the risks in afib ablations using the AtriCure Synergy bipolar radiofrequency clamp. This was based on the results of the ABLATE clinical trial for ablation of persistent or longstanding persistent atrial fibrillation during other heart surgery. The panel recommended that the FDA approve it, setting the stage for formal FDA approval, which could come by the end of March 2012.
Learn more: FDA Advisory Panel Recommends Approval of Bipolar Radiofrequency Clamp for Concomitant Surgery for Persistent Atrial Fibrillation
I am scheduled for AV node ablation this Friday, November 18. I am 83 years old and have had bouts of afib for more than 35 years. I’ve taken many different medications, and combinations of medications, which work for a while and then stop, and seven cardioversions. Sixteen months ago I had a pacemaker implanted when my heart rate dropped below 40. I found out after the implant that it was not for the afib but to pick up the pace when my heartrate goes too slow.
A month ago my cardiologist/electrophysiologist proposed two options: a regular ablation that would take several hours to perform, or an AV node ablation, which he said is much less aggressive, takes onlyabout one hour and has a risk of less than 1%. I opted for the AV node ablation–and then worrying about it and wondering if I should cancel the procedure. One week ago I talked to a friend who had it two and a half years ago, and she told me it was a breeze (or something like that) and she felt better right away. She said go for it!
Just today I came across your blog, and now I’m wavering again. HELP!
Wish I could help or give you some advice other than good luck. Your story is similar to mine minus the Pacemaker. I am still in a dilemma about what to do. Cardioversions are working fine for me and have been lasting me for 10 months then back in a-fib. I am scheduled for an electrophysiologist consultation in Jan. I am happy getting a jump start every 10 months for the time being but will watch for your opinion and results of the AV ablation. Again good Luck.