Hyderabad: The AIG Hospitals has, for the first time in South India, performed Cryoballoon Ablation on two patients suffering from Atrial fibrillation (AFib), a common heart rhythm disorder that has affected more than 50 lakh Indians.
“The two patients who underwent the procedure last week were discharged in a day and were able to resume their normal physical activities soon after. This is an encouraging start for us to treat AFib using this minimally invasive technique which is much safer for patients,” Dr. C Narasimhan, Director and Head of Department, Electrophysiology, AIG Hospitals, said on Monday.
Pointing out that AFiB was a serious health condition which increases the risk of stroke and heart failure, he said in AFib, electrical impulses (which dictate the heart rhythm) are fast and chaotic leading to irregular heartbeat and making it less effective in pumping blood. “Patients with Afib mostly complain of palpitations, weakness, and shortness of breath. When medications fail in such patients, traditionally radiofrequency ablation procedure is done to stop the malfunctioning electrical signals using radiofrequency energy. But radiofrequency ablation is a long procedure and uses heat energy,” he said.
The new Cryoballoon Ablation technique, however, uses freezing (cryo) to inactivate the abnormal heart tissue causing the irregular heartbeats. “Cryoballoon Ablation was chosen over Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) because it yields more effective results as the re-occurrence of AFib is significantly less.
The procedure time is also less as compared to RFA. All these lead to a better quality of life for our patients,” Dr Narasimhan said, adding that AIG would soon come up with a dedicated AFib clinic to identify and help these patients under a comprehensive programme involving specialists from cardiology, electrophysiology, cardiac surgery, cardiac imaging, and arrhythmia research.