The Atrial Fibrillation Center Offers the Highest Level of Expertise in Diagnosis and Management of AF
The nationally and internationally recognized Atrial Fibrillation Center at University Hospitals Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute in Cleveland, Ohio provides state-of-the-art diagnostics, management and treatment of atrial fibrillation, the most common cardiac arrhythmia. If left untreated, atrial fibrillation (also called AFib, or AF) could lead to stroke, congestive heart failure and even death.
Accurate Diagnosis Leads to Proper Treatment
At the Atrial Fibrillation Center, our board-certified physicians perform a thorough medical examination, along with the latest in diagnostic tests to record the heart’s rhythm or identify any irregularities, including:
- Electrocardiogram (ECG): A noninvasive recording of the electrical activity of your heart
- Holter monitor: A portable device that records a continuous record of the electrical activity of your heart for 24-48 hours; this would record rhythm abnormalities that occur intermittently and may be undetected on the office ECG.
- Event monitor: A portable device usually issued for 12-30 days to record abnormal rhythms that occur infrequently
Leading-edge treatments for atrial fibrillation may include medications or electrical cardioversion, a procedure to reset the heart’s rhythm. Additionally, our experts offer even more advanced procedures, including:
- AF ablation (pulmonary vein isolation, or PVI)
- Atrioventricular (AV) node ablation and pacemaker implantation
- Surgical treatment for atrial fibrillation
These more advanced procedures allow our experts to correct atrial fibrillation when medications have not been effective. These procedures are minimally invasive and are able to either remove the cause of the AF or implant a pacemaker to regulate the heart’s rhythm.
University Hospitals STOP AF Program
University Hospitals’ STOP AF program offers patients simplified therapeutic options for all three types of atrial fibrillation: paroxysmal, persistent and permanent. This program incorporates referring physician input and offers a strong and collaborative partnership between UH specialists, referring physicians and patients. Together, they are able to better identify the most viable treatment solutions for the day-to-day management of AF.
Catheter Ablation to Treat Atrial Fibrillation
The Atrial Fibrillation Center is pleased to offer catheter ablation, a possible cure for atrial fibrillation. Catheter ablation helps to restore natural rhythm and eliminates the need to take AF-specific medications, including blood thinners, so patients can lead normal, active lives again. One of techniques our team uses is called cryoablation. During cryoablation, a catheter is inserted and is used to freeze small areas of the heart, creating scarring. This scarring breaks up the electrical signal that causes an irregular heartbeat, restoring a normal heart rhythm. Another ablation technique uses burning instead of freezing to create this scarring in the heart.