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The first procedure was performed Oct. 3 by Dr. Arjun Gururaj to treat a patient from southern Nevada with ventricular tachycardia, a condition where the heart beats too fast. Additional physicians have also been trained, including Dr. Gaston Vergara, who has also used Rhythmia for his complicated procedures.
When medications are ineffective in treating some heart rhythm disorders, catheter ablation may offer the possibility of more definitive treatment of the arrhythmia. Cardiac ablation is a procedure that can correct heart rhythm problems. During catheter ablation, the physician inserts a catheter into the heart to deliver bursts of high-energy waves to disrupt the abnormal electrical activity. The recent ablation procedure was conducted using the new Rhythmia Mapping System, a cardiac mapping solution that allows physicians with special training in electrophysiology, or the electrical activity of the heart, to collect and display signals representing the heart’s electrical activity.
This equipment is extremely helpful for those with complicated abnormal heart rhythms and for patients who have already had a similar procedure and need it to be redone. With the system, within minutes the physician can create and view a highly detailed map of the patient’s heart to help determine the precise location to be treated with cardiac ablation. The system is the first of its kind to offer rapid high-resolution mapping and is expected to potentially reduce procedure times. Other systems can map up to 6,000 points on the heart, while Rhythmia can map 30,000 high-definition points, which leads to much better outcomes for patients.
Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican’s three hospitals are leading institutions in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with abnormal heart rhythms. Its electrophysiology (EP) department has two state-of-the-art laboratories that offer a wide range of procedures to patients with detected heart rhythm abnormalities. Related services include advanced mapping and ablation therapy, heart rhythm monitoring, and a range of pacemaker and implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) devices. Currently, the San Martín campus is the only St. Rose facility to use Rhythmia.
"At St. Rose, we are committed to implementing the latest technologies to treat our patients, and we are pleased to be one of the first institutions in the U.S. to offer the innovative Rhythmia Mapping System," said Lawrence Barnard, president/CEO of Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican's San Martín Campus. "The system’s fast and detailed high-resolution maps made a tremendous difference in enabling our physicians to quickly diagnose and treat the source of the patient’s arrhythmias, as well as efficiently confirm the success of the procedure. It’s an important addition to our full suite of services to diagnose and treat a variety of heart rhythm conditions."